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UNIVERSITIES URGED TO PLAY A ROLE IN CLIMATE CHANGE

13/10/2016

Hon. Dr. Moses Amweelo, former Member of Parliament, and Mrs. Virginia Namwandi, Vice-Chancellor receiving publications on Climate Change from Mr. Paulus Ashili, Senior Conservation Scientist from Ministry of Environment and Tourism.

Honourable Dr. Moses Amweelo, former Honourable Member of Parliament affirmed that more hands were needed on deck to address the challenges of climate change and Namibian Universities could also play a vital role. He, recently, presented at a Public Lecture on “Climate Change: Assessing the Predictions and Namibia's Readiness to cope”at IUM, Dorado Main Campus.

He said universities needed to fully understand the phenomenon and study strategies in place at both international and national levels for coping with climate change in order to be effective in their roles. Lecturers and Professors could educate students on why Namibia is particularly vulnerable to changes in weather patterns. In order to strengthen the knowledge and sound understanding the lecturers could, furthermore, introduce activities in which they ask the students to think about ways that could alternatively be used to save energy (e.g. solar, wind, wave, hydro, tidal stream, geothermal, nuclear power generation and biomass).

In addition, universities should participate in activities on national action plans to deal with climate change by providing environmental awareness and education on effects of climate change in order to protect the environment from degradation. Universities could do this by encouraging students to study and learn ways which could reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve the environment by adopting a green way of life, introducing environmental education programmes, keeping the campuses clean, reducing littering, planting more trees, and using sustainable modes of transportation, e.g walking, jogging and cycling.

Hon. Dr. Amweelo also noted that there were linkages between climate change, poverty reduction, and sustainable development thus a comprehensive national sustainable development strategy was essential in combating the impact of climate change. It is also for this reason that all universities were called upon to proactively play their role.

The presentation concluded with a lively interactive question and answer session.

At the event, representatives from the Ministry of Environment and Tourism presented two publications to Mrs. Virginia Namwandi, ViceChancellor, on behalf of IUM for the library. One (publication) was the National Policy on Climate Change for Namibia - 2011 and the other was the National Climate Change Strategy & Action Plan- 2013 - 2020.