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“Seychelles is Already Net Zero” Says President Ramkalawan

…. As U.S.-Africa Leaders’ Summit ends in Washington DC

By: Mohammed Abu

African Small Island Developing State of Seychelles President Wavel Ramkalawan has recently disclosed that his country is already net zero and even cleaning up the emissions of the world while also taking note of the efforts of others to achieve same in 2030, 2040, 2050 or 2060.

President Ramkalawan noted that despite its size, Seychelles is not only talking about saving the planet but rather playing an active role through the application of concrete actions of increasing the percentage of its territory dedicated to conservation and protection, implementing quotas for exploiting marine resources and the relentless commitment to cleaning up the atmosphere to ensure the survival of not only its islands and the world.

“Unfortunately when we talk of Africa we sometimes forget about the islands, we talk of the Congo Bassin, the Green Belt and others and we forget that the oceanic states and islands play an important role. When we are talk of trees, the Sea grass Meadows removes more CO2 from the atmosphere than trees. For example, right now Seychelles and Mauritius are jointly managing the ‘Saya de Malha bank where the Sea grass Meadow is larger than Switzerland. Seychelles is also already protecting 32% of its Ocean, which is equivalent to a size larger than Zimbabwe. As part of our commitment, as of 2023, small Seychelles will be protecting 100% of its Mangroves and also the Sea grass Meadows”, President Ramkalawan intimated.

President Wavel Ramkalawan made these disclosures during the thematic session held at the Washington Convention Centre as part of the recently held U.S.-Africa Leaders’ Summit under the banner themed “Building Our Green Future Together.

” The segment focused on three main overarching themes; Conservation, Climate Adaptation, and a Just Energy Transition where members of the various high-level panel exchanged views.

Moderated by Haydé FitzPatrick, from Voice of America, the thematic session was officially launched by the US Secretary of State, T. H Anthony Blinken who delivered the welcoming remarks followed by remarks by the President of the Democratic Republic of Congo, H.E Felix Tshisekedi and the Chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee, T.H Gregory Meeks.

During his intervention on Conservation, the highlight of President Wavel Ramkalawan’s Statement stressed on the significant efforts undertaken by Seychelles as an African Small Island Developing State (SIDS) in order to maximize conservation of both its land mass and oceanic territories whilst also promoting the country’s economic growth.

The session explored ways that the governments and peoples of the United States and African nations are partnering to address conservation, climate adaptation, and the just energy transition based on shared priorities. The discussion identified ways to better integrate natural resource planning and infrastructure development, including clean energy. These areas included 1) conservation based on forests and wildlife and protecting Africa’s waters – ending Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing; 2) climate adaptation and 3) the clean energy transition.

On President Ramkalawan’s panel of discussion on the Conservation theme also included the Administrator of United States Agency for International Development (USAID), T.H Samantha Power, and the Chief Executive Officer of Africa Wildlife Federation (AWF) Kaddu Sebunya.

Other African Heads of State who also addressed the floor on other proposed themes on the agenda included Zambia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and Nigeria.


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