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Africans demand action on climate change


A climate change from Afrobarometer has graphically summarised Africans’ perspectives on the climate crisis and their demand for urgent climate action.

A release from Afrobarometer survey in 20 African countries just ahead of the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27), the country cards provide at-a-glance insights into Africans’ awareness of climate change, their experiences with deteriorating weather conditions, and their expectations of a response to the crisis.

Country cards available for 20 African countries surveyed in the ongoing Round 9 (2021/2022) of Afrobarometer, the go-to source for reliable data on what Africans are thinking.

The cards show that significant proportions of citizens are experiencing worsening droughts and floods.

While awareness of climate change varies widely across the continent, a majority of those who have heard of climate change say it is making their lives worse. Most want their governments to take immediate action to address the crisis, even if it comes at a high cost.

Few citizens are satisfied with the efforts to date of governments, business and industry, developed countries, and ordinary citizens in fighting climate change, and most demand “a lot more” from these stakeholders.

Highlights of Afrobarometer country cards on climate change:

Majorities in eight of the 20 countries report that droughts have gotten more severe over the past decade.

Countries like Madagascar in which about 86 percent of the population, Niger 72 percent and Tunisia 69 percent are the large majorities experiencing worsening drought in their countries while Basotho 73 percent of the population, Mauritians 68 percent, and Nigeriens 64 percent express the greatest concern about worsening floods.

On average across 20 countries, only half, indicating 51 percent of citizens are aware of climate change.

Awareness created is as high as 74 percent of Malawi population, 73 percent in Mauritius, and 70 percent in Gabon are aware of climate change, whereas only two in 10 Tunisian population representing 22 percent are aware of climate change.

But among the countries aware of climate change, most say it is making their lives worse.

“This perception is especially widespread in Madagascar (91%), Lesotho (88%), Mauritius (86%), Malawi (86%), and Benin (85%)”, the survey noted.

Also, majority of all the 20 countries want their government to take action now to limit climate change, even if it is costly, causes job losses, or takes a toll on the economy.

But in eight countries, 80% or more of citizens who are aware of climate change share this view.

Most citizens are not satisfied with the efforts of various stakeholders in fighting climate change and its effects, and demand “a lot more” from their governments, business, industry, and developed countries.

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