The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dr. Bhofal Chambers has disclosed that Liberia’s economy, population and environment are highly susceptible to climate change vulnerability and therefore called on every citizen to take actions and measures to promote adaptation to reduce climate change risk.
Speaking at the launch of Liberia’s National Adaptation Plan (NAP) Adaptation Communication (AdCom) on Wednesday 8 December 2021 at the Corina Hotel in Sinkor, Dr. Chambers said reduction of climate change risk requires stronger commitment and collaboration from all sectors at all stages.
Liberia’s National Adaptation Plan is intended to help Liberia tackle the issue of climate change through a sound adaptation program that involves a whole of society approach to achieve the goal, vision and specific objectives.
It was developed through a consultative multi-stakeholder process and informed by sectoral climate vulnerability and risk assessments, and the disaster risk assessment.
The NAP focuses on six sectors that are priorities of the Government of Liberia in its efforts to adapt to the impacts of climate change: agriculture, coastal zones, forestry, energy, waste management and fisheries.
Speaking further, Dr. Chambers said like other countries in the world, Liberia is experiencing climate change and noted “the contemporary climate change today includes both global warming caused by humans, and its impacts on earth’s weather patterns.”
According to him, there have been previous periods of climate change, but the current changes are more rapid than any known events in earth’s history.
Speaker Chambers noted that the sensitivity of Liberia’s biophysical features to climate change and the level of vulnerability of each sector is being left and observed.
According to him, projections of future trends for temperature and precipitation show that Liberia will continue to be affected by changing climatic conditions.
“Global Climate Modeling (GCM) data indicates that the main annual temperature is projected to increase by 1.8 degree Celsius between 2040-2059, while monthly precipitation is projected to decrease by 1.3 mm per month in the 2040-2059 period,” Speaker Chambers said , “While this is alarming, it requires our collective action and decision to make a change and save our environment. There’s no doubt that resilient and inclusive infrastructure can help change lives. And by changing our habits, as communities and people, we can surely tackle the climate emergency and build a sustainable,” he added.
Speaker Chambers acknowledges that Liberia has taken another big step by formulating the NAP, which serves as a 10-year strategic plan through 2030.
He disclosed that the NAP document aligns with and supports Liberia’s Vision 2030 Agenda and the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD).
For his part, EPA Executive Director, Prof. Wilson K. Tarpeh said that the NAP is intended to address Liberia’s medium and long term climate change adaptation interventions in order to strengthen the country’s resilience against climate change.
He disclosed that the development of Liberia’s NAP took into consideration six climate sensitive sectors including agriculture, coastal resources, energy, fisheries, forestry and waste.
Prof. Tarpeh indicated that the level of vulnerability of these sectors were assessed and appropriate adaptation actions identified along with the required funding.
“I am pleased to account of some of the major achievable milestones during the development of Liberia’s NAP. They are: Training of more than 100 persons in Climate Risk Vulnerability Assessment at the community levels; Overseas Training in Israel in the area of Agriculture Adaptation, Disaster Management and Prevention; Development of a Gender Strategy; Development of concept notes in various sectors for possible climate funding; Development of the curricula and the Establishment of the Graduate School of Environmental Science, Climate Change and Biodiversity at the University of Liberia,” he disclosed
Prof. Tarpeh lauded the Green Climate Fund(GCF) and United Nations Development Program (UNDP) for supporting the NAP process.
“Thanks to the ‘team of developers’ for the level of professional work done to give Liberia a clear direction in adapting to the challenges of climate change across the country,” the EPA Boss concluded.
The launch of the NAPs and AdComs attracted several government officials, sector representatives and stakeholders involved in the NAP.