The WWF is run at a local level by the following offices...
- WWF Global
- Central African Republic
- Central America
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
- European Policy Office
... without waiting for the Earth's pressure cooker to explode.
The recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) informs us that during the period 2010-2019, annual global greenhouse gas emissions were at their highest level.
After so long, the next eight years are our last chance to reverse the trend. Indeed, the objective of limiting warming to 1.5°C can only be reached if global greenhouse gas emissions decrease by 60% by 2030, with a maximum peak before 2025 - that is, tomorrow.....
It is, therefore from today that we must accelerate our choices, decisions and actions, whether you are a manager in the public administration, a company director, or a simple citizen.
Madagascar, like all countries, can develop economically and socially, while limiting its greenhouse gas emissions. Many solutions mentioned in the IPCC report are feasible in the country. Some have already been initiated and need to be accelerated, others need to be initiated. Some solutions are technological or nature-based, others involve behavioral changes.
Some selected excerpts:
- Low-emission energy system: efficient electricity production from renewable energy sources and expansion of the use of this electricity to all possible uses (including transportation and cooking); reduction of the use of fossil fuels to a minimum. This is all the more feasible as the cost of solar electricity and battery storage, for example, have decreased by 56% and 64% respectively between 2015 and 2020, making this electricity more competitive than electricity obtained from fossil fuels. According to the IPCC report, in 2019, the energy sector was responsible for 34% of greenhouse gas emissions.
- Low-emission and climate-resilient urbanization strategy: urban designs that promote short commutes to work, pedestrian streets and bicycle paths; development of electrified public transport (consistent with a low-emission energy system); development of green and blue infrastructure (urban forests, tree-lined streets, permeable surfaces). Green and blue infrastructure in urban areas has multiple benefits: reduction of the "urban heat island" effect and heat stress, improvement of air quality, improvement of mental and physical health of urban citizens, adaptation to climate change impacts (flooding and others).
- Strategy to reduce emissions by preserving natural ecosystems: protecting, improving management, and restoring our forests are among the relatively low-cost measures compared to other emission reduction options, yet they are not sufficiently supported financially. According to the IPCC report, deforestation is responsible for 45% of the emissions in the Agriculture/Forest/Land Use group; although the rate of deforestation has decreased overall and the area of forest cover has increased, this is variable by region, and maintaining low deforestation is still a long-term challenge.
- Behavioral and social norms changes following the "Avoid - Change - Improve" principle: Use of walking and biking instead of fossil-fuel powered vehicles (consistent with a low-emission urbanization system); Use of telecommuting that reduces our fuel consumption and transportation expenses; Use of energy-saving technologies (low-energy electrical appliances, fatana mitsitsy); Adopt the circular economy by reusing and recycling, which reduces waste in the production and consumption of goods and energy. These behavioral changes are not self-evident at the individual level, cultural and structural change must be fostered with a combination of awareness and cost signals. According to the IPCC report, the potential to reduce emissions by implementing demand-side change strategies is 40 to 70% by 2050.
These solutions are not going to happen quickly on their own. Each of us has the capacity and the power to contribute to a rapid change, and some more than others, especially when it comes to putting in place and applying all the measures to promote these changes (incentives, financial and technical means, regulations, etc.).
Time is short, but it is not yet too late to change our way of life, our consumption and production systems, so that we can collectively avoid a life irreversibly punctuated by natural disasters that are still unprecedented.