July 16, 2024

 Africa Climate Summit 2023:  Osinbajo, Ogunbiyi back global carbon tax system holding G-20 countries accountable, as leaders pledge $23bn  

Oredola Adeola

Professor Yemi Osinbajo, former Vice President and Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All, (SEforALL) have backed the proposal for a global carbon tax system that holds G-20 countries accountable for their carbon emissions, insisting that those who contribute the most to global emissions should pay more, while those who do not pollute should pay less.



Professor Osinbajo and Ogunbiyi made this known in separate interviews on CNN monitored by EnergyDay, at the end of the three-day Africa Climate Summit in Kenya.



EnergyDay gathered that the three-day Africa Climate Summit in Kenya concluded last week, with leaders proposing new global carbon taxes to tackle climate change. The summit, hosted by Kenya and the African Union, aimed to address the increasing exposure to climate change in Africa and the world.



Professor Osinbajo, who is now an advisor for the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP), a consortium that helps developing countries shift to clean energy said carbon credits could be a game-changer for Africa and supported the call for urgent action on climate change.



The former Nigerian Vice President said the carbon credits have the potential to unlock billions for the climate finance needs of African economies while expanding energy access, creating jobs, protecting biodiversity, and driving climate action.



He said, “The proposal reflects a commitment to addressing the pressing issue of climate change by investing in renewable and sustainable energy solutions in Africa, which is essential for reducing emissions, creating jobs and driving social and economic development.



Osinbajo, therefore noted that the summit provided a “new framing” of Africa, not as victim, but as a key solution to the climate crisis.



According to him, with its untapped renewable energy potential, African, world’s youngest and fastest growing workforce, and critical minerals and resources, has the fundamentals to become a cost-competitive green industrial hub, greening both African and global consumption and removing carbon from the air.



Ogunbiyi, CEO of SEforALL during the chat with Christiane Amanpour, about the proposals on the global carbon tax made during the Summit welcomed the proposals for a global carbon tax system.



According to her it is a step in the right direction to ensure that those who pollute pay for it, and those who do not pollute are not paying for it.



She said, “I think that it’s important that the nations that pollute pay for it. And so, I think that the global carbon tax is a step in the right direction.



“It’s important that we have a mechanism to ensure that those who are polluting are paying for it, and that those who are not polluting are not paying for it. And so, I think that the global carbon tax is a step in the right direction,” Ogunbiyi said.



She emphasized the importance of renewable energy in ensuring a sustainable future, adding that renewable energy is critical for Africa and that it is critical for the world.



She said, “I think that the role of renewable energy in all of this is to ensure that we have a sustainable future. And so, I think that the role of renewable energy is to ensure that we have a future that is sustainable, that is clean, and that is green,” she said.



Ogunbiyi, therefore noted the readiness of African countries to lead and take action on climate change. She commended the commitments made and the leadership shown by African countries in tackling climate change.



She said, “African countries are well-positioned to lead in the fight against climate change, despite being the most vulnerable region in the world to its effects.



EnergyDay gathered that during the inaugural Africa Climate Summit in Kenya, a total of $23 billion had been pledged to green projects by governments, investors, development banks, and philanthropists.



Germany announced 450 million euros (about $481 million) of climate finance pledges, and the US pledged $30 million to support climate-resilient food security efforts across Africa. The United Arab Emirates pledged $4.5 billion following an initiative to boost Africa’s carbon credit production 19-fold by 2030.



Carbon credits are permits that allow companies to emit a certain amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases.  They are used to offset carbon emissions and create a monetary incentive for companies to reduce their carbon emissions.



They are generated by financing projects that aim to reduce carbon pollution in the atmosphere, such as tree planting, or reduce planet-heating pollution by promoting switching to renewable energy, especially in developing countries.