Gambian Professor Elected Vice Chair of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

By: Modou Kanteh

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has elected a Gambian born Professor as its new Vice Chair of the Working Group II (WGII), which focuses on impacts, adaptation and vulnerability. The event took place during its 59th Session held in Nairobi, Kenya, from 25 to 28 July 2023.

( Professor Denton)

Professor Fatima Denton comes to the position of vice chair of WGII position with several years of experience in climate science. She will serve for the duration of the next seventh assessment cycle, which starts immediately after the election.

Professor Denton will assist the Co-Chairs of WGII through its seventh assessment cycle.

Mada Denton directs the United Nations University Institute for Natural Resources in Africa (UNUINRA). She coordinated the UN Commission for Africa (ECA)’s African Climate Policy Centre (ACPC) and managed ECA’s largest substantive division. She is a political scientist, prolific author and twenty-year veteran of the IPCC. She is an accomplished senior manager, renowned throughout the UN’s research and implementation divisions in leadership in climate change, natural resources management, research and policy development in climate change, green transitions, stranded assets, minerals and extractives.

She has a prominent footprint in international advisory committees, scientific bodies and a recipient of several awards.

The Gambian delegation to the 59th Session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was led by Mr. Lamin Mai Touray, Director of the Department of Water Resources and IPCC Focal Point for The Gambia.

The IPCC prepares comprehensive Assessment Reports about the state of scientific, technical and socio-economic knowledge on climate change, its impacts, future risks and options for reducing the rate at which climate change is taking place. It also produces Special Reports on topics agreed to by its member governments, as well as Methodology Reports that provide guidelines for the preparation of greenhouse gas inventories.

The IPCC Working Group II (WGII) assesses the impacts of climate change, from a world-wide to a regional view of ecosystems and biodiversity, and of humans and their diverse societies, cultures and settlements.

It considers their vulnerabilities, capacities and limits of their natural and human systems to adapt to climate change and thereby reduce climate-associated risks together with options for creating a sustainable future for all through an equitable and integrated approach to mitigation and adaptation efforts at all scales.

The event was hosted by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Kenyan government.

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