Africa is more vulnerable to climate disasters because of their higher rates of poverty, greater social inequality, lack of “climate-defense” infrastructure, and lack of access to insurance. The consequences of this vulnerability can be seen in weather disasters statistics for 2000–04, that showed a ratio of 1:19 people in a developing country were affected by a weather disaster, on an annual average basis as opposed to 1:1500 in OECD (developed) countries.
Insurance industry data shows that disaster losses from extreme weather as a percentage of national income were three times higher in low- and middle-income countries than in higher-income countries for the years 1984–2003. The current spending to mitigate climate change is not even close to what is required. Estimates show that the costs are manageable if countries take meaningful action with urgency.
African countries need to develop comprehensive and effective adaptation as well as mitigation strategies and programs to meet the climate change challenge.
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