Put environment agenda at forefront, Jafo urges youths

DODOMA: AS Tanzania prepares to participate in the 28th United Nations (UN) Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP28), youths have been asked to put the environment agenda at the forefront so as to help the country in averting all possible impacts of climate change.

The call was made here on Thursday by the Minister of State in the Vice-President’s Office (Union and Environment), Dr Selemani Jafo, when he officiated at a one-day seminar on unlocking youth potential towards effective participation in the National and Global Climate Action.

Organised by Youths for Climate Action Tanzania, the young persons from Tanzania under the Green Samia Initiative convened in the country’s capital to discuss several matters regarding environment management, preservation and protection, ahead of the COP28 scheduled for next month in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The Green Samia Initiative is a forum engaging youths and the community at large to combat climate change and protect the environment.

The young persons from both the mainland and the Isles requested a training seminar so that they are well prepared to participate effectively. Through the Vice-President’s Office, the government gave a greenlight to their request.

Speaking when opening the one-day seminar, Dr Jafo insisted that the government under President Samia Suluhu Hassan was well committed to empowering and amplifying the voices of young persons who are uniquely positioned to drive impactful and innovative initiatives addressing the pressing climate challenges facing the nation.

“The youth have every reason to drive the development agenda as well as suggest every possible measure likely to avert the effects of climate change,” said Dr Jafo, also asking the youth to grab every opportunity that came as a result of climate change.

Climate change poses significant challenges globally, including Tanzania. The impacts of climate change are already being felt across the country, affecting agriculture, water resources, health and ecosystems. Therefore, according to the minister, it was crucial to mobilise efforts to mitigate these impacts and develop innovative solutions to adapt to a changing climate.

Tanzania is among the countries that are expected to attend the COP28 next month. Nearly 200 countries gather each year for the two-week “Conference of Parties” – referred to as COP – to agree joint efforts to tackle climate change. This year will mark the 28th such conference, or COP28, and will kick off on November 30 in Dubai.

The Conference is expected to be attended by over 70,000 delegates, including the youth from all over the world.

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