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Talking Points of Mrs. Rhoda Peace Tumusiime Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture of the African Union Commission at the United Arab Emirates Side Event on Water and Climate Change @ Cop 22 14 November 2016

November 15, 2016

TALKING POINTS OF MRS. RHODA PEACE TUMUSIIME COMMISSIONER FOR RURAL ECONOMY AND AGRICULTURE OF THE AFRICAN UNION COMMISSION AT THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES SIDE EVENT ON WATER AND CLIMATE CHANGE @ COP 22 14 NOVEMBER 2016 United Arab Emirates Pavilion, Blue Zone - Area D - Green Tent - Pavilion 1   1. Convey appreciations to the organizers for the invitation extended to the AU Commission to participate. 2. Africa is the most vulnerable continent to Climate Change and our leaders in addressing the global challenged established CAHOSCC in 2009. The context in Africa in terms of water resources, management and impact of climate change 3. Water resources are important to both society and ecosystems. We depend on safe and adequate water supply to sustain our health. Water is very crucial for agriculture to achieve food and nutrition security, energy production, navigation, recreation, and manufacturing. 4. Many of these uses put pressure on water resources thereby leading to water stresses that are likely to be exacerbated by climate change. In many areas, climate change is likely to increase water demand while we are currently experiencing shrinking rivers, lakes e.g. Lake Chad reduced to over one tenth of its size. The glaciers on Mount Kilimanjaro are also melting. 5. Warming temperatures leads to climate variability, changes in precipitation and runoff causing sea level rise that will likely continue to affect water supply and quality. 6. This shifting balance would challenge water supply and sanitation managers to simultaneously meet the needs of growing communities, sensitive ecosystems, farmers, energy producers, industries and manufacturers. In some areas, water shortages will be less of a problem than increases in runoff, flooding, or sea level rise. These effects can reduce the quality of water and can damage the infrastructure that we use to transport and deliver water. An example of the El Nino experience in the Great Horn of Africa this year. Implementation of SDG 6 by the African Union 7. The regional policies adopted by the AU Heads of State and government that would help to facilitate the implementation of the Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development Goals 6 (SDG6) in Africa include: Africa Agenda 2063, Sharm El-Sheikh Commitments on Water and Sanitation, Kigali Action Plan on Water and Sanitation and the Integrated African Strategy on Meteorology (Weather and Climate Services). All these policies are geared toward the achievement of the African Water Vision 2025. 8. The 23rd African Union Summits of Head of State and Governments held in Malabo 2014 adopted the Decision on the High Level Work Programme on Climate Change Action in Africa (WPCCAA) (Assembly/AU/Dec.538(XXIII)), which request the Commission to: o Elaborate on the implementation of the CAHOSCC Youth Programme on Climate Change (CYPCC) including Youth participation in climate change negotiations; and continental wide youth competition on climate change aspects to enhance youth engagement in climate change actions. o Develop a CAHOSCC Women and Gender Programme on Climate Change (CWGPCC) to engage women and gender in climate change related actions. 9. Africa launched two initiatives at COP 21 in Paris: 10. Some examples of successful water adaptation and mitigation efforts on the continent include: o ClimDev-Africa Programme o Comprehensive African Agriculture Progrogrames (CAADP) o Monitoring of Environment for Security in Africa (MESA) o Programme of Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) o Great Green Wall for the Sahara and Sahel Initiative How to promote and fund more African researchers and research institutions 11. Pan African University 12. MESA Programme 13. We are delighted that the UAE is having this side event at COP 22 to further advance the work on water and Climate Change issues in the global negotiations particularly the implementation of the NDCs and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. 14. We quite understand that it could be quite challenging in the negotiations. However we would like to ensure you not to give up the struggle on the inclusion of water because investments in water is huge and require technology, finance and capacity building. Strengthen partnerships between the African Union and the United Arab Emirates in finding new solutions to ensure water security. 15. We would like to assure you of the commitment of the AUC to continue to collaborate with all partners including UAE to support water in the realization of our Africa Water 2025, Africa Agenda 2063 and in particular its first 10 years cycle and the Agenda 2030.