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Policy Responses to Climate-related Security Risks: The African Union

BP 2005 AU Climate_cover
Publisher: SIPRI
SIPRI, Stockholm:
May, 2020

Africa is responsible for a mere 4 per cent of global carbon dioxide emissions. Yet, 57 per cent of the countries facing the highest double burden of climate exposure and political fragility risks are located in sub-Saharan Africa. As the risks are most pronounced in fragile countries and transcend boundaries, responses from intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) such as the African Union (AU) are crucial in developing the relevant solutions.

To offer a better understanding of how the AU discusses and responds to security challenges arising from climate change, this Background Paper provides a comprehensive overview of the AU’s climate security policy landscape for interested policymakers in Africa and beyond. The main findings reflect that the AU is increasingly recognizing different security risks, and that its discourse is rapidly developing towards more integrated responses to climate-related security risks.


I. Introduction

II. Overview of African Union structures and processes

III. Methodology

IV. Food security

V. Peace and security

VI. Human security

VII. Energy security and natural resource use crises

VIII. Conclusions


Vane Moraa Aminga was a Research Assistant in the Climate Change and Risk Programme.