Skip to content

More Climate Finance must Reach African Cities Directly

For most city mayors and managers in Africa, the debate about whether climate change is real is a moot topic. A recent World Bank report shows that 70% of greenhouse gases are generated in cities. But cities in low-income countries, including most of Africa, have contributed less than 0.2% of this total to date. So, who should foot the bill for mitigating the impacts and adapting infrastructure to future extreme weather events? A study conducted across 35 cities in Ethiopia, Kenya and South Africa estimated the total benefits of investing in green cities to be about US$1.1 trillion up to 2050. This is equivalent to 250% of these countries’ annual economic output. This is where upper- and middle-income countries come in. They can support their low-income country counterparts by increasing climate finance flows. Another important source of finance will be from the private sector. Currently, about half of the climate finance globally comes from the private sector.