Climate reparations

South African officials say they need support if the country is to move away from fossil fuels – Photo: Unsplash

South Africa demands ‘climate reparations’ from wealthier countries

SA’s Environmental Minister says ‘richer states’ must pay reparations to the less fortunate – in order to help fight climate change.

Climate reparations

South African officials say they need support if the country is to move away from fossil fuels – Photo: Unsplash

Two senior officials from within the SA Government have asked for wealthier nations to pay their dues, if the world is to shift towards a greener future. The whole continent of Africa could lose-out big time… unless ‘climate reparations’ are paid to developing countries.

Demands for climate reparations made by SA officials

Presidential Spokesperson Vincent Magwenya spoke about the ANC’s position on Sunday. He said that ‘grants, not loans’ would be needed to support the transition away from coal. If South Africa is not supported, Magwenya fears that ‘high-carbon tariffs’ will be slapped onto our exports.

“This money will need to come from various sources including the funding that industrialised countries have promised to developing countries and from commercial financial institutions. A just transition is needed to ensure that the shift to a low-carbon economy does not negatively SA.”

“South Africa’s exports need to remain competitive in a global economy where goods from countries with high carbon emissions will soon attract high tariffs. Unless we reduce our emissions, many of the goods we seek to export will find key markets closed to them.” | Vincent Magwenya

‘The climate crisis is not of Africa’s making’ – ANC minister

Meanwhile, Environmental Minister Barbara Creecy is also taking a firm position. She also points to Africa’s massive debt bill, suggesting that the entire continent would have to look at restructuring a number of agreements before closing down existing power production plants.

Climate reparations
Minister Barbara Creecy has made her demands clear -Photo: GCIS / Flickr

Creecy went on to state that the global warming ‘has largely not been caused’ by African countries. Therefore, she argues, complying with greener targets should not come at their expense – and climate reparations are seen as an ‘immediate solution’ to this impasse.

“From the perspective of the African Group of Negotiators we do need to see immediate support for loss and damage on the continent. Of course we want money [right now]. More money will be required in the form of grants, not loans.”

“The majority of African countries are heavily indebted. That will now require a fundamental restructuring. We can’t have a situation where a climate crisis, which is not of their making, worsens that situation.” | Barbara Creecy