CCI has released a statement at the end of the African Climate Summit today…

SEPT. 7, 2023 — Citizens’ Climate International enthusiastically supports a call from the African Climate Summit for a global carbon taxation regime that could be part of the agenda at the COP28 climate conference in Dubai this fall.

“In addition to being the most effective tool for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, a global system for coordinated carbon taxation can also provide the much-needed resources for African countries to transition away from fossil fuels and adapt to the damaging effects of climate change,” said David Michael Terungwa, coordinator of CCI in Africa.

While in Nairobi, Terungwa led a training of climate advocates on building political will for climate action through lobbying, preparing Citizens Climate International volunteers in Kenya to lobby the Kenyan government to put a price on carbon.

The Summit, which wrapped up Wednesday in Nairobi, Kenya, proposed the global carbon tax in a declaration signed by heads of state attending the Summit. In the “Call to action” section of the declaration, the signatories said they:

“Urge world leaders to rally behind the proposal for a global carbon taxation regime including a carbon tax on fossil fuel trade, maritime transport and aviation, that may also be augmented by a global financial transaction tax (FTT)) to provide dedicated, affordable, and accessible finance for climate-positive investments at scale, and ring-fencing of these resources and decision-making from undue influence from geopolitical and national interests.”

The declaration also calls for transformational reforms in international financing to relieve the debt burden that inhibits economic development in many countries. In particular, it calls for “debt pause clauses” for countries recovering from catastrophic natural disasters that are becoming more frequent with climate change.

“Debt often becomes a hole that many countries cannot climb out of,” said Terungwa. “When disaster strikes, limited resources are better spent to help people put their lives back together.”

At the summit President Ruto and other leaders urged reforms to the global financial structures ‘that have left African nations paying about five times more to borrow money than others, worsening the debt crisis for many’. This is the issue highlighted by Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley in the Bridgetown Initiative’ and a component of the CCI dialogue with the World Bank Group.  Speaking about the Bridgetown initiative in April Antonio Guterres commented..“The international financial architecture is short-sighted, crisis-prone, and bears no relation to the economic reality of today,”

There was also a renewed call for the global north to fulfill promises such as the 2009 pledge of $100 bn annually to developing nations in climate finance.  If the financial barriers were removed Africa could not only prosper itself without further locking in global warming but also help us all……

In Africa, we can be a green industrial hub that helps other regions achieve their net-zero strategies by 2050. Unlocking the renewable energy resources that we have in our continent is not only good for Africa, it is good for the rest of the world.” 

“We do not want to say ‘let those guys pay because they are the polluters’, we are saying, ‘let’s all pay’, and then let’s have a mechanism where we invest these resources where we unlock the biggest value on decarbonisation.”