ECA hosts workshop for policymakers on IPCC activities and findings

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 30 April 2017 (ECA) – The Economic Commission for Africa’s African Climate Policy Centre (ACPC) on Sunday hosted a workshop for policymakers on the activities and findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) where climate experts presented the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) findings as well as the work of the IPCC in the coming years.


The workshop was also meant to promote knowledge about the Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) cycle work plan, priorities of the IPCC, its role, processes and activities.


AR6 will assess scientific findings that have been published since the IPCC’s last comprehensive report, the Fifth Assessment Report, which was completed in 2014 and provided crucial input into the Paris Agreement on climate change that was adopted in December 2015.


Those in attendance included Ambassadors accredited to Ethiopia, representatives from climate sensitive ministries in Ethiopia, lawmakers, officials from the Pan African Chamber of Commerce, United Nations agencies in Ethiopia, international non-governmental organizations and members of the Ethiopian business community.


Special Initiatives Division Director (SID), Fatima Denton, who presented a paper on climate-resilient pathways, said with the historic Paris Agreement on Climate Change now firmly in place, “many are asking how can we now begin to look at climate change in a different way, looking at it from a business model; from an opportunity perspective and trying to understand exactly how we can use it as a pretext to model our development trajectories and to ensure that inasmuch as we are talking about the impact of climate change we are also talking about how we can reach and achieve food security”.


“These are all essential staples on our radar in Africa and I think the IPCC findings should begin to give us some elements of how we can begin to embrace all these problems, how we can translate them into our national development processes and how we can ensure that these messages are speaking to our consumers and are resonating with our continent,” the SID Director told the workshop.


IPCC Bureau members and authors participated in the workshop and another one held Saturday as part of a two-day outreach event, attended by policymakers, practitioners, scientists, civil society, business and media representatives ahead of the IPCC’s five-day scoping meeting that begins May 1, 2017 in Addis Ababa, to draft the outline of the Sixth Assessment Report. The meeting will bring together 200 experts from some 60 countries.


Scientists presented the latest IPCC report, the AR5, which found that the world has the means to limit global warming and build a more prosperous and sustainable future, but that pathways to limit warming to 2ºC relative to pre-industrial levels would require substantial emissions reductions over the next few decades.


“We need to deploy a range of mitigation measures to combat climate change,” said Gian-Kasper Plattner of the IPCC’s Technical Support Unit, adding lifestyle behavioral changes like flying less were also important.


The scientists and the lawmakers discussed the IPCC findings and what they envisage for the future as well as plans for the Sixth Assessment cycle in the context of the Paris Agreement, including the production of the IPCC special report on the impacts of global warming to 1.5 degrees Celcius above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty.


The IPCC is a UN body that assesses the science related to climate change to provide policymakers with regular scientific assessments concerning climate change, its implications and risks, as well as recommend adaptation and mitigation strategies.


Its assessments provide governments, at all levels, with scientific information that they can use to develop climate policies.


Issued by:

Communications Section

Economic Commission for Africa

PO Box 3001

Addis Ababa


Tel: +251 11 551 5826