Forum on implications of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report for Africa

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 7 November 2014 (ECA) - Following release of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), the African Climate Policy Center (ACPC) has launched an online discussion forum to facilitate debate on what the report means for Africa.

The processes used to come up with the AR5 had a comparatively less participation by Africans. Limited literature from Africa was also used, fewer comments originated from Africa and the number of African authors was not commensurate with the continent’s population. Given the foregoing, does the AR5 sufficiently highlight Africa's perspectives?

While there are chapters that focus on regions, the overarching orientation of the IPCC reports is tailored to provide a global assessment using regional cases and examples from various global regions. Thus, the contextualization of the IPCC report becomes strenuous and challenging for regional application of the findings.

These raise some pertinent questions on what the IPCC assessment really means for Africa. The forum thus aims at stimulating debate on the key findings of the AR5, including the following:

  • What does the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report mean for Africa’s development and transformation agenda?
  • Does the Fifth Assessment Report adequately capture Africa specificity and challenges?
  • What are the climate change opportunities revealed by the report for Africa?

You are welcome to post questions to a panel of experts on the forum. The panel consists of climate change experts involved in the IPCC process, as well as other professionals who are well versed with the climate change and development discourse in the Africa. Alternatively, you can engage in particular topics outlined on the forum page.

As an outcome, the forum intends to generate a discussion and to shape Africa’s interest within the framework of such future globally led assessments including the Intergovernmental science-policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). The identification of the current gaps in the IPCC AR5 in lifting Africa’s cases, and its utilization in addressing Africa’s climate peculiarities will be discussed with the proposition of measures to fill these gaps.