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Njila's Plea

Categories: BLOG | Posted: 08/07/2019 | Views: 104

Njila Banda is a Zambian journalism student based in Lusaka. His recent assignments have led to this reflection on the effects of climate change on his country.  Weekly blog.

Global warming is ever rising in the world, and more especially in the African continent. My country, Zambia, in particular has been hit severely. I strongly feel Zambians should have a louder say in issues pertaining to climate change.

Action should begin among us, the people, to show we can fight this terrible crisis.

Zambians can act against climate change by planting trees, because trees contribute to our environment by providing oxygen, improving air quality, climate amelioration, preserving soul, conserving water and supporting wildlife. Through this act alone, Zambians and the world at large can fight climate change.

Most countries in Africa are in economic downfall, and this is mostly because of climate situations. Countries like Zambia depend so much on mining and agriculture, but looking at the situation today, things have fallen apart in agriculture. There is not enough water to generate electricity through our main hydro system, so farmers can’t irrigate their land.

This is now a wake up call for Zambians to find alternatives, such as planting solar panels to access enough water for irrigation.

The solar panels would help reduce power cuts in the country, which have been imposed because of the lack of water in the Kariba reservoir. They would also improve life so much for a lot of businesses in the central business district of Zambia that require electricity to operate. And we should also think of wind turbines as another better source of electricity. Many people living in rural areas cannot afford electricity generated from the country’s main reservoir, and we must find alternative means of generating electricity.

Zambians could also act to halt climate change by reducing air pollution, which would mean reducing the burning of fossil fuels such as the coal and petroleum used in energy production.

But the point behind this is that when countries keep reducing air pollution, they must also reduce production in industries that emit gases affecting climate change.

So - we need alternatives to meet the key issue to reduce global warming to well below 2°C.

There have been many international treaties signed among nations on ways through which climate situations can be reduced, such as the Paris international agreement in which each country that signed nominated the emission reduction target. Let’s say - if these agreements are signed, nations should then be bound by them.

Countries like the USA, with their many production industries, hugely affect the climate because the rate of production is too high. The toxic gases they emit affect the climatic patterns across the world, including those of my country, resulting for us in increasing droughts.

It is for this reason that Zambians and the world need to stand up now and talk about practical solutions to climate change. We want countries to save the planet for future generations – my generation - through reducing these climate situations.

It must start from the constituencies we're living in - through interacting with our members of parliament and asking them to speak out to halt climate chaos.

I feel the Zambian government in particular should make laws that at least help us to contribute to controlling climate change before it’s too late.

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