Thursday, October 22, 2020

SADC should develop climate resilient infrastructure ÔÇô Mokaila

Botswana has expressed concern that SADC member states are not adequately addressing climate change which has impacted negatively on the Water and Energy sectors in the bloc.

Commenting on issues raised by the recently held High level Ministerial Dialogue forum on Water and Energy crisis in SADC region,Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources KitsoMokaila questioned the resolve of the bloc in addressing climate change.

“In SADC are we competing or we want to better the region? Do we want to better the livelihood of our people by co-investing on infrastructure that will better us all?” asked Mokaila.

Mokaila urged the bloc to co-invest collectively and share resources in building infrastructure that can help mitigate the off shoots of climate change, amongst them floods, drought and El Nino. 

Mokaila called on member states to work together to better the lives of their communities, adding that implementation of Energy and Water sector has often lagged behind due to inadequate project preparations.

SADC Director of Infrastructure and Services RemigiousMakumbe who presented the status of Energy and Water crisis in the region said providing infrastructure support for regional integration within the context of the regional Economic integration agenda would help solve the pending issue of Energy and Water crisis in the region.

He said SADC member states must reduce energy and water consumption by formulating a regional policy that promotes energy demand side management measures such as remote electric geyser switches, water sensor dispatching equipment and time controlled shower units for institutions.

Makumbe also proposed member states to develop new energy and water sector infrastructure as demand for energy and water services increases due to population growth. He also urged President Dr Ian Khama to consider climate resilient water projects.

Makumbe said the life cycles of such projects is usually longer than parliamentary terms and it’s important that their approval, planning and financial models be as apolitical as possible.

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