At its 585th meeting on March 30 2016, the Peace and Security Council of the African Union held an open session on Climate Change: State fragility, peace and security in Africa.
The debate reflected the collective acknowledgement that climate change, peace and security in Africa are inextricably linked, stressing the need for all AU Member States to further build national resilience capacities.
The Council also acknowledged that climate change in Africa, especially in pastoral communities, is a potential trigger of inter-communal violence, therefore calling on Member States to share international expertise and coordinate international efforts in mitigating the impacts of climate change. This resonates with the findings and recommendations of last year’s New Climate for Peace report that stressed the importance of increasing local resilience and coordinating efforts to jointly reduce climate-fragility risks.
Particularly with regard to early warning and conflict prevention efforts, the Council stressed the importance of mainstreaming climate change into all of the AU Commission’s activities. It requested the AU Continental Early Warning System (CEWS) to intensify its cooperation with early warning centres of the Regional Economic Communities and Regional Mechanisms for Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution (RECs/RMs) in order to build capacity of Member States in this regard.
Concluding the debate, the Council agreed to hold an annual open session on climate change.
Please consult our Factbook for further information on conflicts involving pastoral communities of Sub-Saharan Africa.
The longstanding dispute over water rights among Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia escalated in 2011 when Ethiopia began construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), in the absence of any agreement with downstream Egypt. The GERD dispute offers an alarming insight into just how dangerous future transboundary water disputes may become, particularly in the context of a changing climate.
Coinciding with the first days the German Presidency of the European Council, on 3 July 2020 adelphi and the Institute for European Studies at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel launched a new report “The Geopolitics of Decarbonisation: Reshaping European Foreign Relations”. This summary highlights the event's key outcomes.
Women in the region suffer disproportionately from climate impacts, but they also play an essential role in addressing climate change. With the right policy responses, it is possible to reduce security risks and empower women to better address the challenges they face.
The impact of climate change is posing a growing threat to peace and security. Germany is therefore putting climate and security on the Security Council’s agenda.