Exploring the Role of Climate Science in Supporting Long Term Adaptation and Decision Making in Sub Saharan Africa

"Africa faces considerable challenges in adapting to the long-term impacts of climate change. Policy-makers not only have to contend with projected changes to the region’s climate, but also high vulnerability to existing climate variability and low levels of adaptive capacity in many countries and communities. Each of these factors is exacerbated by the complex interaction of wider social, economic, cultural and environmental drivers that affect the continent. Added to this, uncertainties in our ability to understand and simulate localised changes in the climate, as well as large gaps in climate observation networks, further confound the decision-making process. Ensuring that policy-makers are able to respond to the medium- and long-term implications of climate change is important in promoting climate-resilient development. Despite the inherent uncertainties that are associated with it, climate science can support planners in making informed decisions on future investments aimed at optimising the use of scarce resources available to developing country governments and subnational entities. Yet there is a lack of evidence for – and detailed understanding of – gaps in the uptake of science for long-term strategies for climate-resilient development, particularly for sub-Saharan Africa."