Two UN arms join forces to examine economic costs of climate change to Africa

Abdoulie Janneh and Achim Steiner

23 July 2007 – The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) today announced their intent to work together on African environment-related issues, including the economic costs of climate change and financing the shift to a low-carbon economy.

The heads of the two organs, ECA Executive Secretary Abdoulie Janneh and UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner, also decided to revise their existing agreement to cover such topics as environmental statistics, adaptation economics, sustainable production and consumption, during a meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

“In many respects, the environment is still seen as a tax on development, instead of an investment,” Mr. Steiner said, stressing that he hopes the ECA and UNEP will intensify their focus on the connections between economics and the environment.

While in Addis Ababa, where the ECA is headquartered, Mr. Steiner also met with other UN agency heads, as well as African Union Chairperson Alpha Oumar Konaré.

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