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Greta Thunberg speaks for Africa when it comes to climate. Where are Africa’s voices?

CAIRO, Egypt, 21 April 2022 -/African Media Agency(AMA)/- Africa has become the face of the global climate crisis, yet Greta Thunberg has emerged as the continent’s leading voice of advocacy – even among African activists, according to the newly launched report, Climate Change in Africa: Are Africans sleepwalking to disaster?

The research was undertaken by Africa No Filter to understand storytelling about climate change in Africa and establish whether it feeds existing stereotypical narratives about the continent or shows Africans as active agents in global climate action. Insights were gathered using a literature review of academic writing on climate change in Africa, online media and mainstream African news sources, conversations on Twitter, and Google searches between October 2020 and September 2021.

The report shows that Africans are missing from climate news and analysis and that few of the individuals tweeting about climate change in Africa are African. Additionally, out of 41 well-known African climate change activists identified in the report, only 15 were on Twitter, and they seldom tweeted. Those who tweeted more regularly often retweeted Western stories, especially from Greta Thunberg.

Moky Makura, Executive Director at Africa No Filter, said: “There is a perception that Africa’s voice is missing when it comes to climate action discussions, and we wanted to understand why. The report shows that Africans are engaging, but it’s on local instead of global climate issues, and we need to be doing more of both. We need more African activists speaking out, and our leaders need to engage more. That’s the only way to change the dominant narrative about the lack of African action on climate change.”

In addition to Thunberg’s outsized influence on Africa’s climate narrative, the report also found that:

Climate Change in Africa: Are Africans sleepwalking to disaster? is the latest research project by narrative-change organization Africa No Filter. It forms part of their work to understand and shift harmful and stereotypical narratives about Africa. The report comes at a crucial time for the continent. Egypt will host COP27 in November, which offers African activists and the media the opportunity to drive narratives that show Africa taking climate action instead of being the continent hit hardest by climate change.

Distributed by African Media Agency on behalf of Africa No Filter.

Research Methodology

The report was compiled using five quantitative data collection methodologies, including Google Trends, Twitter conversations and mainstream African media, to understand climate change questions Africans were concerned about, Twitter conversations Africans were having about climate change and who was driving those conversations. The report also analyzed whether leading African activists had Twitter accounts and their messaging, and the common themes across all data, which investigated content published between 1 October 2020 to 30 September 2021.Inquiries: Lerato@africanofilter.org

Source : African Media Agency (AMA)

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