16 December, 2021
From floods to droughts, Africa has borne the brunt of the climate crisis despite contributing very little to it.
Frontline communities, particularly those from the Global South, are paying the highest price due to fossil fuel exploitation, yet are the least responsible for the crisis.
In East Africa, a multi-billion dollar project to make Uganda an oil producer is underway. This is despite calls by environmental and climate change activists to stop the project. The oil pipeline passes through crucial ecosystems and activists have warned that they risk being destroyed.
Last year, South Africans were up in arms over a plan by Shell to conduct a seismic oil exploration. The Wild Coast is known to be home to marine life, whose existence is at risk if the exploration is allowed to go on.
These are not the only two regions where fossil fuel projects have threatened the lives and livelihoods of communities. Life in the DRC's Virunga National Park, a Unesco World Heritage Site, was threatened by oil drilling.
Scientists agree that coal, oil and gas are majorly to blame for the climate crisis, but the world does not have a way to check these fossil fuels' production.
In fact, a UN report shows the world is on track to produce more than twice as much coal, oil and gas by 2030 than is required to keep global heating to below 1.5C.
The Paris Agreement, important as it is, does not reference fossil fuels and has failed to constrain production. The commitments made by states to reduce fossil fuel consumption are crucial, but not enough to decrease production.
We, therefore, need a complementary agreement if we are to stop fossil fuels.
Just like fifty years ago, when the world used international treaties to defuse the threats posed by nuclear weapons, today, the world needs a Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty.
The Treaty will help to phase out fossil fuels, support dependent economies, workers and communities to diversify away from fossil fuels, ensure 100% access to renewable energy globally and promote a just transition that leaves no-one behind.
Africa has vast renewable energy potential.
Join the call for non-proliferation, global disarmament and a peaceful transition.