The greatest human catastrophe that is climate change will hit the world’s poorest continent, Africa, the worst, according to the African Development Forum (ADF).
The organisation of church leaders, that works to encourage a more substantial reaction among African and Caribbean Christians to climate change, will host a summit to equip delegates with the information needed to create eco-friendly congregations.
‘Dried Up, Drowned Out’ advocates ‘facing the reality of Africa’s changing climate’ and seeks to encourage world leaders to secure a fairer global climate deal for the continent. The event will culminate with a letter to David Cameron, signed by a collection of Black Leaders, expressing the Diaspora concerns about the amplified effects climate change is likely to have on their motherland.
ADF partner and Baptist minister, Reverend Wale Hudson-Roberts said:
“The summit will seek to challenge Africa’s double injustice. God has given us a beautiful world. Now the climate is changing fast, people are suffering from droughts and floods; forests are being destroyed; wildlife is dying.”
He further underlined: “Africa is the least responsible for climate change and is among the hardest hit.”
Speakers will include a panel of theologians, charity officials and religious leaders. Robert Beckford, was the first ever university lecturer in Black Theology and currently serves as adviser to the ADF. Revd Dave Bookless is co-founder and director for theology, churches & sustainable communities at A Rocha UK – a Christian environmental and nature conservation movement. Other speakers include Tearfund’s Babatope Akinwande, Dionne Gravesande from Christian Aid, Revd Chris Andre Watson from the BMS World Mission and Bishop Wilton Powell of the Church of God and Prophecy.
According to Christian Aid, 182 million people in Africa could die of diseases directly attributable to climate change by the end of the century.
Also referred to as global warming, other effects on Africa include increased desertification, causing populations to move; a 10-30 per cent fall in cereal crop yields by the 2050s, compared to the 1990 levels; increase injury and death caused by the heat waves and an additional 67 million people in Africa exposed to malaria epidemics by the 2080s.
Dried up, Drowned Out will be held on Thursday 21October 2010, from 9.30am-4pm at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, 235 Shaftesbury Avenue, London WC2. To register and find out more, go to the African Development Forum website.
By Davina Kirwan