New UK-backed projects worth £49 million were announced at the inaugural Africa Climate Summit, hosted by Kenya from 4-6 September. These projects will focus on mobilising finance for climate action and help people manage the impact of climate change across the continent – two critical areas in Africa’s fight against climate change. The funding will help to create jobs, grow economies and improve the lives of women, farmers and at-risk communities.
This delivers on the UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverley’s promise of honest reliable investment in Africa when he visited Kenya in December 2022, along with COP26 commitments, demonstrating the strength and capability of UK-Africa partnerships.
This includes £34 million for new projects across fifteen African countries to help women, at-risk communities, and more than 400,000 farmers build resilience against the effects of climate change, under the established CLARE, CIWA and WISER programmes. Early warning systems, such as text alerts, radio and social networks, will help hard-to-reach communities take action before extreme climate events occur, and these projects will also improve water security for more than 1.5 million people.
Seven new climate finance projects were launched at the Summit. Investments worth £15 million from UK-backed FSD Africa Investments will mobilise capital from private sources, allowing small-scale businesses to access finance, create innovative products and deliver inclusive tech solutions such as turning desert into land for farming. Together, these projects will improve access to basic services including renewable energy and healthcare for over 500,000 people, generate 3,400 jobs, and provide cheaper and reliable power to households.
UK Minister for Development and Africa Andrew Mitchell, said: “Our partnerships with African countries on green investment and climate resilience are growing economies and improving lives. But more action has to be taken, as those least responsible for climate change are increasingly bearing the brunt of its effects.
“The UK is working closely with African partners to fight climate change, boost resilience and help those whose lives are most impacted.”
Whilst in Nairobi, the Minister will reaffirm the UK’s commitment to providing £11.6bn international climate finance over five years, and will call for rapid reform of the international financial system to unlock trillions of dollars to combat climate change.
He welcomed the launch of Weza Power, a new partnership between the Government of Burundi and UK-backed Company Virunga Power, to expand energy access to almost 70% of Burundi’s population.
In addition, he visited Nairobi Railway City, a regeneration of the city centre designed by British architects with the latest green technology and KES 11.5bn of UK investment. This is one of six climate investment projects fast-tracked by President Ruto and Prime Minister Sunak at COP27. Since the meeting, construction has begun, and ground has been broken at a second project.
Minister Mitchell also announced details of the third successive Climate and Development Ministerial, hosted by the COP28 UAE Presidency and the UK ahead of COP28, with Malawi and Vanuatu as co-chairs. The Ministerial was first launched by the UK ahead of COP26 to generate tangible outcomes for climate finance access and loss and damage.