The Sahara and Sahel Observatory, represented by its Executive Secretary, Mr. Khatim Kherraz, took part in the virtual Ministerial Conference on the Great Green Wall, organized on September 7, 2020.
The overall purpose of this conference was to reaffirm the commitment of Member States and technical and financial partners to the Great Green Wall.
On this occasion, the main conclusions of the “Great Green Wall: Implementation Status and Way Ahead to 2030” report of the United Nations Convention to fight desertification, were presented and gave rise to discussions on the 2030 Initiative's prospects.
At the end of the conference, a Ministerial Statement on the Great Green Wall, which could be used as a basis for strengthening synergies and complementarities between all countries and partners of the Pan African Agency of the Great Green Wall, was adopted.
As a reminder, the Great Green Wall Initiative, launched at the Summit of the Community of Sahel-Saharan States (CEN-SAD) in 2005 in Ouagadougou and approved by the African Union in 2007, reflects the will of the Heads of State and Government of Sahel-Saharan States to engage and unite to face the recurring challenges of climate change, land degradation and loss of biodiversity. It is supported by many regional and international organizations and relies on the mechanisms and institutions of the 3 United Nations conventions: UNCCD, UNFCCC and CBD.
It is also noteworthy that the OSS made very early contribution to the Initiative, by explaining the concept of the Great Green Wall program (in 2008), and by actively taking part in the definition of the guidelines necessary for its implementation and the establishment of a consistent regional strategy (adopted in September 2012 by the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN).
The OSS has also coordinated and implemented large-scale programs in the Great Green Wall countries. The most recent program focused on the Sahel and West Africa (SAWAP) program monitoring and the design of geospatial services within the framework of the BRICKS project (Building resilience through innovation, communication and knowledge services) financed by the World Bank.