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The AfDB Must Honour its Public Mandate for Sustainable Development

The African Climate Reality Project (ACRP) is using Africa Day (25 May) to call on the African Development Bank (AfDB) to uphold its public mandate for sustainable development, and prioritise climate action across the continent. Africa is grappling with the devastating impacts of climate change, impacting millions of lives and exacerbating existing inequalities.

Despite the AfDB’s efforts to showcase its involvement in renewable energy projects, not enough is being done to focus the Bank’s attention on a complete shift to renewable energy projects across the continent. The AfDB still invests a large sum of money into fossil fuels across Africa, increasing the threat of climate change and affecting communities on a daily basis.

The AfDB will host its Annual Meeting from 27-31 May 2024, in Nairobi, Kenya, under the theme “Africa’s Transformation, the African Development Bank Group, and the Reform of the Global Financial Architecture.” The focus of the meeting will be on reforming the global financial architecture to benefit the continent. African leaders like Kenyan President William Ruto believe the current system is unfair to Africa, and is calling for a “win-win” approach.

“Climate change is a pressing threat to Africa’s development,” says Aurelie Kalenga Njimgou, Branch Manager at ACRP. “The AfDB, as a crucial financial

institution, has the power and responsibility to shift the scales and finance a sustainable future for Africa.”

We urge the AfDB to include these key issues in discussions at its AGM:

End Fossil Fuel Finance: Implement a policy that eliminates funding and support for new fossil fuel projects, aligning with the 1.5ºC Paris Agreement goal.

Strengthen Civil Society Engagement: Increase transparency and actively engage civil society experts and affected communities in shaping and implementing AfDB policies.

Prioritise Transparency: Enhance disclosure of financial flows and create clear criteria for identifying legitimate climate finance projects.

Empower Renewable Energy: Prioritise grant funding and capacity building for community-owned renewable energy initiatives.

Strengthen Accountability: Establish robust community-driven grievance mechanisms and monitoring systems to ensure projects are implemented fairly and effectively.

“The AfDB has a unique opportunity to champion a just transition away from fossil fuels and towards a future powered by renewable energy,” says Kalenga Njimngou. “By prioritising climate action and actively engaging with civil society, the AfDB can contribute to a more equitable and sustainable future for Africa.”

ACRP will run a social media campaign during the AfDB’s AGM to make demands for an increase in renewable energy grant financing, and call on climate activists and the public to sign a petition, putting pressure on the Bank to prioritise sustainable financing for the sake of Africa’s green future.