In light of the global threat brought by climate change, no continent will be hit as severely by the consequences than Africa. Indeed, the continent is set to become increasingly vulnerable to extreme weather events and climatic impacts, threatening economic growth, infrastructure and the livelihoods of all.
As governments across Africa gather for the UN led Africa Climate Week in Ghana, simultaneously this Wilton Park round-table dialogue in South Africa, will bring together 40 under 40 young African thought leaders, actors and change makers, from South Africa, other SADC countries, Kenya, Ethiopia, Senegal and Nigeria amongst others together with UK counterparts, to discuss how individuals, societies and governments can become more resilient in their responses to climate change.
The dialogue will provide a platform for the emerging generation of leaders to discuss how climate change is impacting them and their societies, and develop ideas for solutions to increase resilience, sharing expertise across the continent, equipping them with knowledge, insights and tools to allow them to mobilise their communities to increase resilience to climate change.
Through interactive dialogue participants will share experiences about the vulnerabilities facing their communities. Discussions will include exploring what resilience means at the daily level, including in relation to climate impacts on water, agriculture and food security, energy, and urban living.
Participants will share their cross-sectoral expertise, develop ideas to provide sustainable solutions, identify positive actions they can take as individuals and to mobilise communities from across the continent. There will be opportunities to build networks across the continent for long-term collaboration and explore partnerships with the UK.
The UK, as a partner with Africa, is committed to lead on building resilience to climate change for the UN Secretary General ahead of his 2019 Climate Summit. The UK is also home to a huge array of specialists/experts, campaigners, NGOs, pressure groups, research institutions and arm’s length government bodies which lead the way on climate science and thinking globally. Increasing the connections between the UK and Africa on climate is of enormous mutual benefit. It will build understanding, build stronger partnerships and challenge collective wisdom. This in turn can only strengthen the case for international action.
Wilton Park, an executive agency of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, will convene this meeting working in partnership with the Africa Climate Reality Project. A global forum for strategic discussion organising over 60 events a year, the Wilton Park style is for a round-table highly participatory format including working in smaller rotating groups, to help generate fresh insights and solutions. Discussion is off-the-record to encourage an open and constructive dialogue.