Zambia has underscored her commitment to biodiversity conservation, land management and fighting climate change, aimed at improving the socio-economic wellbeing of the people.
According to a statement issued to the media, President Hakainde Hichilema says the conservation of biodiversity that constitutes natural capital, is critical to ensuring that Zambia achieves its aspirations of a green economy, as well as attainment of socio-economic development for all.
In remarks delivered on his behalf by Minister of Green Economy and Environment, Collins Nzovu during a Commonwealth side-event held under the theme “Commonwealth Call for Living Lands”, at the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland yesterday, President Hichilema observed that Zambia is endowed with abundant fauna and flora, hence her resolve to take biodiversity conservation very seriously.
“I wish to share with you my government’s determination to ensure that the green economy, which entails low carbon, resource efficient and socially inclusive approach, drives the economic transformation and recovery that we so desperately need,” he said.
The President added that to achieve Zambia’s aspirations, his administration created a dedicated Ministry of Green Economy and Environment, which galvanises functions on the country’s forests, climate change, meteorology biosafety and environmental protection in general.
He explained that bringing interrelated and critical functions in one single ministry will promote a development path that considers natural capital as a critical economic asset and a source of benefit, especially for poor people whose livelihoods depend on natural resources.
President Hichilema further said the re-alignments of portfolio functions is expected to enhance green investments that spur renewable energy and resource efficiency, prevention of the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
“However, we are constrained to achieve most of these targets in time due to inadequate financial resources, making it difficult for us to make our fair contribution to global efforts, in addressing these multiple challenges,” he told the meeting.
He added that “it is equally important that our actions on biodiversity conservation, land management and fighting climate change result in improved socio-economic impacts on people’s livelihoods and our nations”.
President Hichilema has meanwhile, disclosed that Zambia was currently engaged with the global community in formulating a new post-2020 global biodiversity framework and was expectant it would soon be achieved.
Zambia has domesticated the Aichi Targets on Biodiversity, and has been implementing the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan of 2015 with a view to contribute to the attainment of the Convention on Biological Diversity and foster economic development.
The COP26 summit has brought Heads of State and Government and other parties together to accelerate action towards the attainment of Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).