Peace building experts have called on world leaders to address issues posed by global warming as they are also closely related to peace and security especially in vulnerable and fragile regions.
The stakeholders, on Tuesday, August 16, 2022, in Lagos, urged all countries to commit to decisive action that limits global warming in the interests of global peace and security.
Prof. Fidelis Allen, a lead researcher with Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF), said this in his presentation on key findings of the research on climate change in coastal areas.
He said, ”It was important to make human health and safety central to all climate change mitigation and adaptation actions.
”By developing evidence-based approaches to tackle conflict with a climate-sensitive lens, and climate change with a conflict-sensitive lens, it will be easier to drive security, peace, and climate action globally.”
Allen also decried the lack of empirical documents to address climate change issues as they influence Africa’s insecurity and conflicts.
“Climate change itself is rarely a direct cause of conflict. Yet, there is ample evidence that its effects exacerbate important drivers and contextual factors of conflict and fragility,’’ he said.
Dr Samuel Dotse, the CEO of Hatof Foundation, while addressing participants, stated that climate change impacts and challenges the security and stability of people as well as states worldwide.
“Coral bleaching, diversity loss and erratic rainfall can stress livelihoods, drive displacement and increase resource conflicts,’’ he said.
Dotse, an environmental expert, said world leaders have to engage in community-based actions, broader environmental governance and climate policy processes at the national and regional levels.
He stated that enabling participatory approaches will pilot the use of land-based and food systems perspectives, actively impacting climate action in fragile and vulnerable contexts.
Dr. Chukwuemeka Eze, the Executive Director of West Africa Network for Peace building (WANEP), stated that managing security risks requires factoring concepts and procedures for developing indicators.
“Working to mitigate climate change requires reducing its consequences on ecosystems as well as adapting socioeconomic systems.
”It also involves better management of climate-induced heightened resource competition and strengthening governance and conflict management institutions,’’ he said.
Eze added that every dimension of this response must be conflict-sensitive and climate proofed.
“Without the right responses, climate change will mean more fragility, less peace and less security.
“An understanding of how climate change interacts with social, political, economic and environmental drivers of conflict and fragility is crucial.
”It will better place us to make risk-informed decisions integral to achieving international peace and security,’’ he said.
By Tolu Aiyegbusi