Sustainable development recognizes that growth must be both inclusive and environmentally sound to reduce poverty and build shared prosperity for today’s population and to continue to meet the needs of future generations. It must be efficient with resources and carefully planned to deliver immediate and long-term benefits for people, planet, and prosperity.
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GENEVA, June 2, 2015 – Transcending national boundaries, it is anticipated that adverse impacts from climate change will pose severe risks to growth and development across Sub-Saharan Africa. Dry area... Show More +s will get drier and wet areas wetter, leading to prolonged droughts, increased floods and decreased food security. To support the continent’s already existing move toward the modernization and strengthening of Sub-Saharan African climate, weather and hydrological services, known collectively as hydromet, the World Meteorological Organization, African Development Bank and World Bank Group have joined forces to create a regional initiative titled, ‘Strengthening Climate and Disaster Resilience in Sub-Saharan Africa.’ Launched in May 2015 during the 17th session of the World Meteorological Congress in Geneva, the initiative aims to create a new atmosphere of cooperation among regional partners. It will offer key support to hydromet services essential for the strengthening of resilience to extreme weather events and the enabling of economic development.“Reliable and real-time weather and climate information is a prerequisite for multiple sectors of the economy, including water, agriculture, transport, energy and public health,” said Makhtar Diop, the World Bank Vice President for the Africa Region. “Increasing the accuracy of weather forecasts will save lives and livelihoods. We are committed to working together to improve these services in Sub-Saharan Africa.”Most hydromet services in Sub-Saharan Africa are unable to meet current needs for weather and climate information and offer only limited areas of trans-boundary cooperation. A recent World Meteorological Organization (WMO) monitoring survey showed that 54% of the surface and 71% of the upper air weather stations in the region did not report data. In addition, there is limited and often fragmented funding from development partners. The need for a larger, sustainable system architecture inspired the WMO, African Development Bank, and World Bank Group to join forces.“This is a timely and highly needed initiative. With the help of all our partners and member countries, we are committed to bring cutting-edge advancements and experience from around the globe to Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Michael Jarraud, Secretary General of the WMO. “In addition, it is fully aligned with the Global Framework for Climate Services and builds on existing cooperation.”The new initiative is based on several guiding principles, such as improving the capacity of hydromet services and their regional support centers to access global climate data and global models. This includes improved early warning and forecasting to help prevent damage and loss of life from catastrophic events. Partnerships and cross-border coordination among existing services would also be strengthened through information sharing among agencies and advising on improving legal and regulatory frameworks.The expected results of the initiative include the creation of timely and reliable forecasts at the regional, national and local levels, leading to a reduction in the impacts of disasters on people and property. Additional results include improved weather, climate and hydrological services delivered to citizens and weather-dependent sectors and improved international and cross-border collaboration on drought, severe weather and flood warnings. Initial funding for technical assistance is being provided by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR).The initiative will have a flexible framework to coordinate and leverage financing, ranging between US$550-US$600 million, from various sources of development and climate finance. The initial phase will focus on 15 countries and four regional centers. The initiative also addresses how the modernization and strengthening of hydromet services remains a high priority of the region, as expressed in the African Union’s Integrated African Strategy on Meteorology.“As the premiere African development institution, the African Development Bank is happy to join forces with the World Bank Group and WMO in this transformative initiative,” said Aly Abou-Sabaa, Vice President of the African Development Bank. “If done right, this initiative will give a major boost to economic as well as human development indices in Sub-Saharan African, leading to economic growth and development”. Show Less -
Dear Delegates, participants, Ladies and Gentlemen:I would like to start by thanking the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and African Development Bank, for coming together in ... Show More +this partnership . For our client countries and the World Bank Group his program will be pivotal to Africa’s growth, poverty reduction, climate and disaster resilience agendas.I would like to start by asking a fundamental question: why hydromet services are important for Africa?425 million people live in Africa’s drylands, and their population is set to grow by at least 50% by 2030. They are highly exposed to climate shocks; we cannot quantify the real cost to human beings, but the 2008 to 2011 drought cost Kenya alone losses of US$ 12 billion in dollar terms. ODA in humanitarian aid to the Horn of Africa after the 2011 drought was US$ 4 billion, 10% of all aid to Africa.Droughts won’t go away, but better warning systems, better knowledge of basic hydrology and weather patterns, will help plan for and reduce the costs of drought and build broader resilience.Africa’s coastal cities are engines of growth but are highly vulnerable to flooding and sea-level rise. Just in the last three years, major floods have hit cities such as Maputo, Dakar, Lagos and Douala. Like droughts, floods won’t go away; indeed, along with periods of extreme heat, strong winds and coastal storms they are likely to become more frequent. But in our views, hydromet services can help cities plan for expansion in less vulnerable areas and build drainage systems. And they can help reduce the burden of weather related diseases like malaria, cholera, meningitis, and heat stress. Malaria was a particular concern surrounding the 2014 floods in Douala, for example.As you know, Africa faces a huge infrastructure deficit and in 2012 African leaders endorsed an infrastructure development plan for Africa. Countries need transport and trade infrastructure, energy and electric power, water supply and water resource development, to grow sustainably. It is estimated hydro-electric power potential, for example, at 80,000 MW, six times the present level of development. Infrastructure investments are expensive and long term, so they need to incorporate climate risk analysis and climate change to be cost effective and resilient. This means hydromet services in turn need to provide historical data but also forecast a range of likely future climate scenarios to help planners make the right decisions.So Hydromet services support resilient growth across a range of sectors. Farmers who know when it will rain can avoid having their fertilizer washed away, or move livestock to high ground before floods. Transport authorities can design roads for flash floods and municipalities can build drainage systems. Dam operators can reduce reservoir levels and peak flood size. Coastal communities can save lives and livelihoods against storm surge. And in the Sahel addressing weather based risks plays in key role in reducing the “fragility trap” that has contributed to loss of hope and conflict in too many countries.But Let’s take a closer look at the state of hydromet services in Africa.Hydromet services are inadequate in 80% of African countries. They are under-funded, have weak capacity, and their infrastructure has deteriorated. A recent WMO survey illustrated that 54% of surface and 71% of upper air weather stations in Africa did not report data. So they can’t generate local data or use information from regional and global weather centers, and, most importantly, they cannot deliver useful services to the population. Although hydromet is a key public good, often the benefits are not clear to economic ministries because they cut across sectors. This triggers a vicious cycle of under-funding and under-performance. And this is although studies show that investing in hydromet has high returns, with benefit cost ratios averaging between 5 and 7 to one.There are ongoing programs for strengthening hydromet services. ClimDev-Africa Program, coordinated by AfDB under the leadership of the African Union, is supporting mostly regional organizations, and national programs are supported by a number of development partners, some with climate funding. AfDB is financing hydromet upgrading in Niger, for example. But many programs are small and short term.The World Bank supports several programs, implemented by African countries and in partnership with others. With finance from the Climate Investment Funds and the Nordic Fund we are supporting a US$ 21 million hydromet program in Mozambique; the UK Met office, the WMO and the South African Weather Service are providing technical support. In Ethiopia, we are helping to develop an integrated program to improve hydromet, building on support from the EU, African Development Bank, WMO, France, UK, Japan and others,. The Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery, supported by many of your countries, has supported investments and analytical work. Experience shows that the scope of modernization must be substantial in order to be transformative and self-sustaining. While programs under way globally with World Bank support total US$ 500 million, investment needs to upgrade hydromet services in Africa alone are conservatively estimated at US$ 1 billion. Existing programs need to be harmonized and scaled up lasting for impact. Modernizing infrastructure must go together with better institutions and regulations, improved services, adequate budgets for operational costs and integration with regional and global centers.Let me now to discuss the Framework Program wich is being proposed.Today, WMO, the African Development Bank and the World Bank are launching a program for better hydromet services in Africa. It offers a collaborative platform for development partners, where African countries are in the lead. Its objectives are to strengthen the capacity of African countries to improve weather, climate and hydrological services to citizens and to produce timely, accurate forecasts at all levels, contributing to climate resilience, economic development and disaster risk management.The program invests in three main components:Upgrading and strengthening National Hydromet Systems including improved service delivery, capacity building, strategy and management reforms and modernization of infrastructureModernizing Regional Centers including cooperation between national and regional institutions, information sharing, upgrading infrastructure and modellingIntegrating National, Regional and Global systems and Knowledge and Advisory Services: linking national institutions with regional and global centers and improving access to global products, supporting knowledge for strategic development, and financing project preparation and management. The Program:leverages partnerships, remains flexible and fosters inter-agency coordination.It is aligned with the Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS) and the Integrated African Strategy on Meteorology.It champions better hydromet services as a public good for resilient development and poverty reduction, and for scaling up investment financing from development partners and operational financing from host governments.The program learns from past experience and has a robust results framework.Results at national level would include:Hydromet services issue timely and actionable weather, climate and hydrological information at national and local levels;Hydromet services help reduce the impact of disaster and climate risks on lives, livelihoods and economic assets and improve the resilience of investmentsResults at regional level would include:Regional centers provide more reliable information, training and instrument calibration to national agencies;There is improved international and cross-border collaboration, including on drought, severe weather and flood warnings.We estimate the costs of this program to transform Hydromet Services in Sub-Saharan Africa at $ 550 - $600 million over an 8 year period, assuming a client-base of 15 countries and 4 regional centers. 80% of the resources would be for modernization of hydromet infrastructure, and 20 % for capacity building, advisory services and program coordination.We need to be grounded in reality, while aiming at an ambitious, transformative program. So the program will roll out in a phased way, adapting to the pace of funding. Financing would follow a framework approach, including development financing from the World Bank, the African Development Bank, bilateral and multi-lateral agencies, GFDRR, climate financing, multi-lateral trust funds, and contributions from beneficiary governmentsWe know it will take a collective effort to make the partnership succeed. We issue an open call to development partners to join it and expand its development impact.We count on the commitment from African countries, from governments, regional organizations, scientific community, technical agencies, civil society and the private sector to see the program address this gap in the sustainable growth agenda of Sub-Saharan Africa.We thank you for your interest, and hope to work with you over the coming months to make the partnership operational, with a concrete work plan by the end of this year and actions on the ground.Thank You! Show Less -
GENEVA, June 2, 2015 –– The World Meteorological Organization, African Development Bank and World Bank Group today launched an initiative to support the modernization and strengthening of Sub-Saharan ... Show More +African meteorological and hydrological services. These services are key to strengthening resilience to extreme weather events and enabling economic development.Entitled, ‘Strengthening Climate and Disaster Resilience in Sub-Saharan Africa’, this initiative is a direct response to the anticipated adverse impacts from climate change, including food insecurity, which pose severe risks to growth and development across the region.“Reliable and real-time weather and climate information is a prerequisite for multiple sectors of the economy, including water, agriculture, transport, energy and public health,” said Makhtar Diop, the World Bank Vice President for the Africa Region. “Increasing the accuracy of weather forecasts will save lives and livelihoods. We are committed to working together to improve these services in Sub-Saharan Africa.”Most meteorological and hydrological service providers in Sub-Saharan Africa are unable to meet users’ current needs for weather and climate information. Also, corresponding infrastructure is inadequate. A recent WMO survey showed that 54 percent of the surface and 71 percent of the upper air weather stations in the region did not report data. In addition, there is limited and often fragmented funding from development partners. The need for a larger, sustainable system architecture inspired the WMO, African Development Bank, and World Bank Group to join forces.“This is a timely and highly needed initiative. With the help of all our partners and member countries, we are committed to bring cutting-edge advancements and experience from around the globe to Sub-Saharan Africa. In addition, it builds on existing cooperation and is fully aligned with the Global Framework for Climate Services and the African Ministerial Conference on Meteorology – Integrated Strategy on Meteorology,” said Michel Jarraud, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).The initiative is based on several guiding principles such as improving the capacity of National Meteorological and Hydrological Services and their regional support centers to access global climate data and global models. This includes improved early warning and forecasting to help prevent damage and loss of life from catastrophic events. Partnerships and coordination among existing services would also be strengthened through information sharing among agencies and advising on improving legal and regulatory frameworks.The initiative will facilitate coordination and leveraging of financing from various sources of development and climate finance. The initial phase will focus on 15 countries and four regional centers. The initiative also addresses how the modernization and strengthening of hydro-meteorlogical services remains a high priority of the region.“As the premiere African development institution, the African Development Bank is happy to join forces with the World Bank Group and WMO in this transformative initiative,” said Aly Abou-Sabaa, Vice President of the African Development Bank. “If done right, this initiative will give a major boost to economic as well as human development indices in Sub-Saharan African, leading to economic growth and development”.The expected results of the initiative include the widespread availability of timely and reliable forecasts at the regional, national and local levels, leading to a reduction in the impacts of weather and climate extremes on people and property. Additional results include improved weather, climate and hydrological services delivered to citizens and weather-dependent sectors and improved international and cross-border collaboration on drought, severe weather and flood warnings. The initiative was designed with the technical and financial support of the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR). Show Less -
WASHINGTON, June 1, 2015—World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim issued the following statement today:“I welcome the call today for a price on carbon by six of the world’s major oil and gas companies.... Show More + This is an important step in global efforts to drive the world’s economy toward a low-carbon, resilient future and lower climate risks.The CEOs of BG, BP, ENI, Royal Dutch Shell, Statoil and Total have signaled their intention to act and have drawn attention to the role business must play as governments prepare for climate talks in Paris at the end of this year. Clarity and ambition in Paris can help to reduce uncertainty and stimulate clean investment. We need more business leaders from this industry and others to support putting a price on carbon, which will create new economic opportunities for sustainable energy sources and help move us toward a low-carbon future.” Show Less -
Water in every householdNatural springs on the mountain provide a rich source of water for local villagers. Maqsoud and his colleagues discovered these springs eight years ago, and started to work on ... Show More +a mechanism to use them to end the long-standing water challenge Daroonta Tapa residents had faced for years.“We used water from five water springs for the project,” Maqsoud says. “For each spring, we created a storage area, and then extended a pipe from these areas to a large main reservoir. We then extended this down to the village, where we built a huge reservoir. From this reservoir, we distribute the water to every household in the village.”Prior to the project, only two households in Daroonta Tapa village had access to water wells. These were the two houses situated at the village’s lowest elevations, and all the other residents came to these wells for water.Jalad Khan Alaikozai, 50, is the owner of one of these houses and head of the village’s Community Development Council (CDC). “People would line up all day long and even at night to get water from our well,” Jalad Khan recalls. “We weren’t even able to get water for our own use because our well was so crowded. Thankfully, now every household has its own water, and we can use as much as we need. We are very thankful to the NSP for solving one of our village’s very long-running problems.”The Daroonta Tapa village CDC is one of over 34,000 CDCs NSP has established and is democratically elected through secret ballot and mandated with governance responsibilities. The CDCs are proving to be an effective mechanism nationwide for ensuring equitable development, representing the rights and demands of over 18 million rural community members.NSP and its 31 Facilitating Partners have worked through the CDCs to identify and implement some 86,000 small-scale reconstruction and development activities in the areas of water supply and sanitation, rural roads, irrigation, power, health, and education, as well as generated over 52 million paid-for-labor days for skilled and unskilled laborers. Show Less -