South African Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Barbara Creecy has reiterated that the mandate of the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN) in this year's United Nations (UN) climate change conference is making sure that Africa has access to funds for loss and damage caused by extreme weather conditions.
She was speaking on Sunday after addressing the African AMCEN conference in the Spanish capital, Madrid. African environment ministers are concerned that the Green Climate Fund is not being replenished adequately, which creates a challenge for developing countries to achieve their adaptation and mitigation targets.
Creecy said AMCEN was seeking special circumstance conditions to be considered for Africa, to ensure that the continent is provided with infrastructure and financial support in its fight against climate change.
She said that without commitments from developed countries, it would be difficult to achieve the carbon reduction targets in the Paris Agreement.
"Historically, developed countries have created the most greenhouse gas emissions and therefore they have a responsibility to assist less developed countries in the achievement of both their mitigation and their adaptation ambition.
"We are the least contributors to the creation of greenhouse gas emissions and we are the most affected and therefore we have to have access to sustainable and consistent new funding," she said.
Creecy said Africa was already in a desperate situation and could not be burdened with debts, hence the AMCEN wanted financial assistance in a form of grant funding.
In 2015, in Paris, the developed world committed to donating $100-billion to the green climate fund. But currently, just $5-billion had been committed.