Aga Khan companies commit to net-zero emissions by 2030

Prince Rahim Aga Khan. PHOTO | ANTHONY SITTI | NMG

The network of companies under the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) has committed to ensuring net-zero emissions by 2030 as part of their fight against climate change.

Prince Rahim Aga Khan of the AKDN told participants at the fourth edition of the Kusi ideas festival held at Karura Forest in Nairobi that the network’s agencies have developed tools to measure greenhouse emissions, and are working on their plans and budgets to meet the 2030 zero emission goal.

In Kenya, the AKDN is planning to plant more than 500 acres of mangroves in collaboration with local communities to help sequester carbon, which will add to the more than 12 million trees planted by the network in the past few years.

"We will lead by example and share our experiences with others to influence policies and raise awareness…All AKDN operations across agencies and institutions will have net-zero emissions before 2030," he said in a speech delivered virtually to the delegates.

Rwanda President Paul Kagame said in a virtual speech that despite African countries being the lowest contributors to carbon emissions globally, they are bearing the worst effects of climate change.

He said that the biggest challenge has been accessing climate financing, adding that big global greenhouse emitters must pay their dues.

Kenya’s President William Ruto, in a speech delivered on his behalf by Forestry and Environment Cabinet Secretary Soipan Tuya, called on African nations to utilise their national resources to deal with climate change.

"Africa has the potential to produce resources to mitigate climate change. We need to exploit our strengths to build resilience. I challenge this KUSI ideas festival to deal with the bigger question of how we can finance the fight against climate change," Dr Ruto said in the speech.

The President added the Kenyan government has already rolled out an ambitious program of planting 15 billion trees in different parts of the country in the next 10 years.

Tanzania Vice President Philip Mpango said agriculture production in most African countries has been negatively harmed by climate change, and leaders should explore options for building innovative technology to deal with the challenges of increasing food safety.

The two-day festival was opened by Nation Media Group Chairman Wilfred Kiboro, who called upon partners to join the company in its efforts to deal with climate change.

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