His Excellency President Dr Julius Maada Bio has taken part in one of many panel discussions on scaling up adaptation, bringing together key stakeholders to raise ambition on adaptation action for the continent.
Prefaced with opening remarks by Ban Ki-Moon, former United Nations Secretary General and Chair of the Global Green Growth Institute and Mr. John Kerry, the United States Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, the discussion was moderated by Ibrahima Cheikh Diong, Assistant Secretary General, United Nations and Director General of the African Risk Capacity group.
President Bio said the platform would provide an opportunity to catalyse new coalitions of partners and initiatives to accelerate action on the ground across Africa, keeping up the momentum and elevating ambition on adaptation ahead of COP28.
“Countries like Sierra Leone, disproportionately affected despite their minimal contributions to greenhouse gas emissions, require strategic technology transfers to adapt to climate disruptions.
“In July 2023, I established the Presidential Initiative on Climate Change, Renewable Energy and Food Security. This ensures climate resilience is prioritised across key growth sectors and policymaking is coherent. We are implementing coordination and reporting mechanisms for all climate-related activities and projects in our Ministries, Departments and Agencies,” he said.
The President also emphasised that the cornerstone of their climate resilience blueprint is to collaborate with the international community, adding that for them to scale up adaptation, direct, unfettered access to climate finance, bolstering grassroots expertise, and evolving policy frameworks must resonate with the global climate imperative.
“Dedicated climate financing through grants, concessional loans, and capacity-building funds is paramount. Such financial mechanisms can be allocated to support infrastructural resilience projects, foster research and development in green technologies, and buttress Sierra Leone’s policy frameworks for sustainable development.
“Such financing should, however, accommodate flexibility for timely access. For example, our countries should be supported to mobilise private climate finance through innovative instruments, including a carbon market, debt for climate swaps and climate-related debt. There is a significant chance to leverage private climate finance with natural resources,” he urged.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of The Republic of Sierra Leone State House.