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PALM-TREEs Project: Empowering Marginalized Groups in Ghana through Climate-Resilient Solutions


The Official News Centre

PALM-TREEs Project: Empowering Marginalized Groups in Ghana through Climate-Resilient Solutions, University of Energy and Natural Resources - Sunyani

The Pan-African and Transdisciplinary Lens in the Margins: Tackling the Risks of Extreme Events (PALM-TREEs) Project was officially launched in Accra, Ghana, on February 23, 2024.

This collaborative effort aims to delve into the impacts of extreme events on marginalized communities and develop innovative climate-resilient solutions. With a focus on floods, droughts, and heat waves, the project heralds a new era of research and action in addressing climate vulnerabilities.

Dr. M’koumfida Bagbohouna, representing Sustainable Solutions for Africa in Lomé, Togo, emphasized the consortium’s commitment to studying how extreme events disproportionately affect vulnerable groups due to factors such as marginalization, norms, poverty, social identity, geographical location, and gender. With 16 key organizations, including universities such as the University of Energy and Natural Resources and KNUST in Ghana, the project embodies a transdisciplinary approach, integrating both social and physical sciences to tackle climate challenges comprehensively.

The social sciences dimension of PALM-TREEs is exemplified by the research of Ms. Rachel Yeboah Nketiah, a Research Fellow at the University of Energy and Natural Resources. Ms. Nketiah’s study focuses on the impact of climate-induced heat waves and heat stress on women in Accra. By analyzing heat wave patterns and their effects on women’s livelihoods, the research aims to identify adaptive strategies and raise awareness among stakeholders and policymakers. This crucial work underscores the intersectionality of climate vulnerability, highlighting the need for gender-responsive climate action.

Dr. Naomi Kumi, a climate scientist and lecturer at the University of Energy and Natural Resources, underscored the urgency of addressing heat waves’ disproportionate impact on marginalized groups, especially women. By integrating the findings into Ghana’s adaptation strategy, the PALM-TREEs Project aims to enhance resilience and empower communities to withstand climate extremes effectively.

The launch of the PALM-TREEs Project signals a significant step towards inclusive climate resilience in Ghana. By prioritizing the voices and experiences of marginalized groups, the project fosters a collaborative approach to climate action, bridging the gap between research, policy, and practice. As we navigate an increasingly uncertain climate future, initiatives like the PALM-TREEs offer hope and tangible solutions for building a more resilient and equitable society.

Through concerted efforts and transdisciplinary collaboration, we can transform vulnerabilities into strengths, ensuring a sustainable and prosperous future for all, especially those on the margins. The PALM-TREEs Project stands as a beacon of hope, illuminating the path towards climate justice and resilience in Ghana and beyond.

The project which is expected to last for four years is supported by Climate Adaptation and REsilience (CLARE), a UK-Canada framework research programme mainly funded by the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (UK-FCDO) and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC).