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Published June 15, 2022 / Environment

Brazzaville Foundation to be heard by the President of the United Nations General Assembly


June 15, Geneva, Switzerland - Mr. Abdulla Shahid, President of the 76th General Assembly of the United Nations and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Maldives, received representatives of international civil society at the Palais des Nations. Richard Amalvy, Chief Executive of the Brazzaville Foundation and Treasurer of the Conference of NGOs in consultative relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO), was among the speakers invited to address the meeting.

Caption: Photo taken at the 76th General Assembly of the United Nations in the presence of Mr. Abdulla Shahid, President of the 76th General Assembly of the United Nations, and Richard Amalvy, Chief Executive of Brazzaville Foundation.

Read the speech below:


"Mr. Chairman,


It is a great honor to be among the representatives of international civil society called upon to meet with you. Our contributions are in line with the declaration of intent that marked the start of your presidency last year, and my topic is "rebuilding sustainability", the title of your second "ray of hope".


The NGO I represent, the Brazzaville Foundation, supports African initiatives in the fields of peace, environment and health. The perspective of my intervention will therefore be African and environmental, and I would like to highlight the paradoxical injunctions to which the African continent is subjected, in the multilateral concert of globalization. The issue of sustainability in terms of development is correlated with that of resources, peace and stability.


Africa is fighting to reclaim its resources and strengthen the value chains that will enable it to transform the raw materials it extracts locally, in order to create its own growth, with a view to endogenous development that promotes the eradication of poverty and the well-being of indigenous populations.


As elsewhere, African countries are affected by climate change, and must ensure the preservation of one of the world's largest tropical forests, the Congo Basin, which is becoming the planet's first lung. Unlike the forests of Amazonia and Indonesia, which have negative carbon exchange rates due to the consequences of deforestation, the Congo Basin has a positive exchange rate.


One of the injunctions in the discussion on climate transition is to ask Africa to put the Congo Basin under a bell to allow the planet to breathe and the industrialised countries to continue their growth, which amounts to limiting the development capacities of African countries.


This injunction was illustrated last week by the President of the African Union, Macky Sall, who told the OECD in Paris: "There are 1.4 billion inhabitants on the African continent, and over 600 million still have no access to electricity. So when we say we're no longer going to finance fossil fuels, including gas, which is much less polluting than coal or fuel oil, we have to realize that we're seriously undermining the goal of universal access to electricity".


Africa is the continent that destroys the climate the least, but suffers the greatest consequences of climate change. We therefore need to ensure that environmental imperatives take account of the continent's specific characteristics, so as not to impede its development, in particular by following the innovative precepts of the green and blue economy.


This issue must be addressed at the next COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh, in order to resolve the economic and social issues linked to climate change on the African continent, notably by accelerating funding for regional adaptation projects.


In the multilateral concert of globalization, and on the oft-repeated issue of sustainable development, Africa's voice must be heard once and for all.