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Malawi losing 5% of gross domestic product to climate change

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LUKA—The damage is big

Malawi is losing about five percent of its gross domestic product due to climate change, Director of Environmental Af­fairs in the Ministry of Natural Resources Taon­ga Mbale Luka has said.

Luka was speaking in Lilongwe on Monday at the start of a five-day conference on the loss and damage and climate finance to help shape the narratives for Africa ahead of CoP27.

The conference has been organised by the Pan-African Climate Jus­tice Alliance and Civil Society Network on Climate Change (Cis­onecc).

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Mbale described the loss as colossal, saying the resources lost could have been used for other devel­opment activities.

Cisonecc Executive Director Julius Ngoma said the loss could be bigger than the five percent, saying there are other losses em­anating from climate change that are hard to compute.

“Most of the times, we are looking at the losses in financial terms but there are other elements such as soil fertility, natu­ral forest and others which are not com­puted easily but need to be accounted for to paint a full picture of the losses,” Ngoma said.

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He said climate change is not just coming with issues of adaptation and mit­igation, saying even where people do adap­tation, there are also challenges of other issues in the name of loss and damage.

“So we need financ­ing for mitigation, ad­aptation and we also need financing on top of that for loss and damage.

“Now on the part of loss and damages, we are saying Afri­can countries need to improve on our end of documenting what has been damaged and present these things to all those that are go­ing to help us in terms of financing,” Ngoma said.

Pan-African Cli­mate Justice Alliance Head of Programmes and Research Charles Mwangi said, in the last two CoPs, Africa came out disappoint­ed because there was nothing much to gain because the African position has always been watered down.

He said Africa is one of the hardest-hit continents by the cli­mate crisis due to pollution created else­where.

“The regional con­ference we are hold­ing in Malawi would ensure that matters of loss and damage receive high visibility in the run-up to the Egypt-hosted 27 Con­ference of Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Cli­mate Change later in November 2022.

“The conference aims to achieve three broad outcomes which include deriv­ing a common under­standing of the extent of loss and damages, the scope of past cli­mate-related damage as correlated by pro­fessionals and model anticipated damages,” Mwangi said.

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