Making policies work

High stakes for the EU and Africa – COP21 position


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Dr. Hanne Knaepen, Policy Officer at the European Centre for Development Policy Management, said: “Both Europe and Africa have high stakes in finding a global climate agreement that curbs emissions. The EU’s position for COP21 – released today – aims to ensure global temperatures do not rise above 2 degrees. There will be balanced focus on adaptation and mitigation.

“For Africa, agriculture and land use will be very important in the negotiations to ensure food security and economic growth, implying a strong need for adapting to the negative impacts of climate change, particularly for least developed countries. This could mean differing targets and visions, possibly jeopardising a common EU-Africa position at COP21.”

ECDPM’s recent publication ‘Africa and Europe combatting climate change: Towards a common agenda in 2015’ looks at the way forward for both continents. It explains a broader and deeper dialogue on climate change between Africa and the EU could offer solutions and compromises that break some of the deadlocks in the UN negotiations in Paris and in the post-2015 period.

Notes for editors:

ECDPM is a Netherlands based think tank working on issues relating to the EU and Africa.

Dr. Hanne Knaepen received her doctoral degree in Global Environmental Studies at Kyoto University, Japan, where she resided for a period of four years. Throughout her PhD she has mainly worked on the issue of mainstreaming climate change adaptation into existing development in Vietnam and she conducted an assessment of the work of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) within this domain.

To arrange for an interview please contact Emily Barker at or +32474123473

The European Union Commission position on COP 21 can be found online here.


Africa-EU RelationsClimate changeAfricaEurope