Green Economy to Help Make Poverty History in Mozambique
Within two months of a regional conference on Green Economy organized by Mozambique’s Ministry for the Coordination of Environmental Action (MICOA) and WWF in Maputo in April this year, the roadmap was approved by Mozambique’s Council of Ministers and rapidly found its way to Rio de Janeiro, the stage for the International Conference on Sustainable Development.
During a side event organized by MICOA, with the cooperation of WWF and the African Development Bank, Mozambique joined the likes of South Africa, Cambodia, United Kingdom, Indonesia, Guiana, Vietnam and South Korea in launching concrete initiatives moving towards a Green Economy.
The Green Economy Roadmap outlines how the country will move towards economic development and poverty eradication through laying down an institutional, policy and legal framework that will create an environment where sustainable development thrives.
Speaking during the launch of the roadmap, the President of the Republic of Mozambique, Armando Emílio Guebuza emphasised the importance of Green Economy as one of many approaches designed to extinguish the scourge of poverty.
“In Mozambique, the Green Economy model forms part of the body of approaches designed to make poverty history. This is the future that we, Mozambicans, want. This is also the future that the rest of Humanity dreams about,” he said.
President Guebuza added that working together in the future will be essential in saving the earth and its biodiversity.
“The conditions that allow all of us the right to development and to provide for the sustainable use of our resources must be strengthened and protected, at all cost. Working together, as the international community, to save the earth and its biodiversity is imperative. It is an ethical duty, a moral obligation.”
Donald Kabaruka, President of the African Development Bank committed his institution’s support to Mozambique as they embark on this important initiative. The Director General of WWF, Jim Leape, lauded Mozambique achievement following a disappointing outcome at the Rio+20 talks.
“It is heartening to see that some countries are taking responsibility in their own hands, by preparing bold plans and implementing measures to better manage the natural capital that is in their hands, reduce their dependency on non-renewable resources and by making the choices that protect the lives and wellbeing of their population,” said Mr. Leape
Fishermen fishing off the coast of Bazaruto Island, Mozambique. ©Frederick J. Weyerhaeuser
The Green Economy plan for Mozambique is the result of months of intense work by the Ministry for the Coordination of Environmental Action (MICOA), with the Ministry of Planning and Development, WWF and other partner organizations. The approval and launch of the roadmap is an important milestone in a planning process that aims to make socio-economic development in Mozambique more sustainable and more resilient to climate change by protecting, restoring and rationally using natural capital and its ecosystem services to guarantee inclusive and efficient sustainable development for the benefit of present and future generations of Mozambicans.
Mozambique’s population is highly dependent on the availability of basic natural resources such as land, water, forests and fish. The high dependency on such resources and the unsustainable rate and methods of their use and extraction is destroying the very basis of their existence. The pressures are rapidly rising as the population is expected to double by 2030, putting even more of a strain on the already stressed natural resource base in the region.
Mozambique’s roadmap to a Green Economy will be implemented over a period of 18 years through to 2030. Key provisions of the Green Economy plan include a thorough evaluation of the opportunities provided by its rich national natural capital base, including mapping and quantification of ecosystems, an assessment of current and future risks and an assessment of the role of ecosystems in the local economy and the wellbeing of the population.
By John Kabubu