“The existence of significant co-benefits radically changes the incentives for both individual (national) and collective (international) action. Addressing climate change through collective action suffers from a typical market failure – the tragedy of the commons – as the benefits of climate change action are not appropriable. But the presence of co-benefits opens new possibilities”
This paper examines the multi-dimensional regional issue of farmer-pastoralist conflicts and climate change, (the latter described as the underlying cause of the numerous humanitarian crises), in the Sahelian region and its adjoining West African coastal countries. The discussion will proceed as part of on-going efforts towards sustainable solutions for the numerous challenges bedeviling the region.
MJSDL Disclaimer: All errors, if any, are the author's own.
The humanitarian crisis and climate change in the Sahel region of West Africa are like conjoined twins struggling to be attended to in the midst of a devastating global COVID-19 pandemic. Millions of people are trapped in deteriorating conditions in one of the harshest regions in the world. So disturbing is the situation that the international community in October 2020 organized a virtual space donors’ conference in aid of humanitarian efforts in the Central Sahel region. In spite of the grim situation in the region, the paper concludes with a positive tone but not before conceding that the various issues under consideration are so intertwined and cannot be addressed in silos. The paper’s underlying argument for confronting the greatest challenges in the Sahel region was for integrated ‘co-benefits’ policy options. Through ‘co-benefits’ it should be possible for the numerous competing interest groups in the region to explore common grounds to nurture sustainable development and peaceful co-habitation in the Sahelian region as part of our long march towards global sustainability.
This paper, therefore, examines the geographical scope and challenges confronting the Sahelian region by putting the following in context:
- Conflict between humans and the environment: How real is the problem? What can the international community do to derive the most benefits from this largely arid region?
- Multiplier effects of climate change and the emerging security and terrorist threats in the region (exacerbated by the Libyan Crisis and desertification).
- Conflicts between societies: Farmers and pastoralists (scarcity of resources/arable land, grazing rights, water resources, etc.)
- Tradition vs. Modernity (can they be mutually reinforcing in the Sahelian region?).
- The role of Multinational corporations, state vs. regional economic bloc implications.
- Some lessons in Sustainability and Sustainable Development studies.
- Accentuating Prescriptions from the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and other treaties.
- Relevant SDGs (state sovereignty and supra-national collaboration to achieve sustainable development).
- Environmental solutions to environmental problems e.g. Prescriptions from the Paris Agreement.
- Political and security dimensions for the sustainable protection of the Sahel in the midst of climate change
Theoretical Framework and Questions
- What is co-benefit and how does it relate to Sustainability in the Sahel region?
- Why do we need co-benefits in the Sahel? Can the intractable issues in the Sahel fit into co-benefits? A harmonization of efforts through co-benefits at the national, regional and international level would help to reset the path of Sustainable development in a region experiencing the harshest wrath of climate change.
- Theoretical Framework: policy dimensions: legal, environmental, political, and economic, social, security (including human and food security). Intergenerational and intra-generational perspectives. The paper will call for mainstreaming SDGs/Sustainability in national, regional and global governance. The critical issues to be put in the basket for discussing co-benefits in the paper are: Citizenship, health, education, (foreign policy – regional integration vs. sovereignty, development cooperation and colonial alignments – Lusophones, Anglophones, Francophones.
The Sahel region extends from the Atlantic Ocean from the shores of Senegal to the Red Sea in Sudan. The Sahel semi-arid region is a transitional zone between the Sahara Desert to the north and the humid savannas to the south. The Sahara-Sahel region also covers North Africa, (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Egypt), but in terms of geographical scope for this paper, the countries of the Sahel will comprise: Burkina Faso, Chad, Senegal, Mauritania, Mali, Guinea and Niger as well as adjoining southern areas of West Africa such as Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Togo, Benin and Nigeria among others. The decision to focus on these countries is not to discount the impact and implications of the volatile security situation in some of the North African countries such as Algeria and Libya on the intended catchment area of this paper.
The Sahel region is a test case for resilience, climate change and insecurity. It has been identified as one of the poorest regions in the world and presumed to be an area that is (and will remain) most affected by climate and environmental change in the future. The region has experienced unprecedented forms of natural and human-made disasters in the past century. The paper takes the position that the biggest challenge in this already difficult geographical terrain is posed by the harsh environmental and climatic conditions of the region.
Indeed more than 100 countries are facing the consequences of desertification, land degradation, and drylands, however, according to Hulme, Mike and Mick Kelly (1993) ‘no region has been at the center of the debate over the causal links between climate change, desiccation, and desertification more than the African Sahel’. Within the past century, four major droughts have been recorded in the Sahel region: 1909–13, 1940–44, 1969–73 and 1983–85 - all impacting negatively on the natural environment, livestock and people (OECD 2009). In recent decades, there has been an increased deterioration of soil quality, vegetative cover as well as sustained decline in rainfall. Since 1970, the average temperature in the region has risen by nearly 1˚C and is projected to increase 1.5 times global average.
Post-industrial greenhouse gases (GHGs) have led to an exponential increase in global warming and during the past century, human activities have led to an increase in the Earth’s global average temperature by about 0.8˚C. At the global level, human activities within the past five decades including overpopulation, and mechanized crop and animal production have intensified the fragility of the eco-systems, countries and people in the Sahelian region. Both global and regional human-generated activities can be blamed for the ecological disasters in the Sahel region which unfortunately, deepen the link between the fast expansion of desertification and climate change. It is also established that the surface temperature in the region has risen markedly in the past 50 years and there are clear risks that the trend will continue in the future (IPCC Fifth Assessment Report 2014).
Having used the desiccation of the Sahel region as an example of the global shift in the climate system that has occurred since the 1950s, we shall now connect the multiplier impact of climate change to insecurity in the Sahel. Literature abounds in the enumeration of other challenges such as drug, gun and human trafficking, smuggling and terrorism, mass migration, weak-governance, insecurity, etc. in the region.
Socio-political insecurity and violent extremism are on the rise, especially the activities of Islamic State, Al-Qaeda and affiliates. Boko Haram and deadly motley groups proliferate across the region (Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso, Chad, Nigeria), further debilitating countries already reeling from a host of ills from economic insecurity and corruption to poor governance and weak governmental institutions. Since February 2020, about 4,000 people across the Sahel have been displaced daily, adding to a total of 765,000 people in the past 12 months. There is no doubt that inhospitable environmental conditions, stress, food shortage and rising cost of living in the Sahel-Sahara region are major contributing factors to a restive, socio-political keg of gunpowder sparking the Arab Spring in nearby Tunisia. The bonfire spread rapidly, toppling long-standing regimes in Libya and Egypt. The after-effects are still raging in Sudan, Algeria, Syria and Yemen. The collapse of Libya and its associated controversial concept of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) would require further analyses to establish a link with the current spate of the proliferation of small but deadly weapons in the Sahel region. The situation is so volatile that the neglected and vulnerable indigenous groups of pastoralists, the elderly, women and children are now at the mercy of both a harsh climate and human generated state of anarchy. Some scholars have established a complex relationship, and rightly so, between climate change and human mobility as a basis for a global discourse to address humanitarian, peace and sustainable development agendas . The situation in the Sahel fits perfectly in that thinking. In the case of the Sahel, violent conflicts and tension continue to build between farmers and pastoralists in the region over diminishing grazing land and water resources especially in Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin and Nigeria (Shettima, A., & Tar, U, 2008).
Although the early-warning signals went out long ago within the Brundtland report and Stockholm Declaration among others, the vulnerable in the most fragile region of the world have been forced to bear the brunt of decades-long inaction to confront the obvious threats of climate change on an international, regional, national and local scale. ‘Whatever the state of the environment, it is clear that environmental benefits and harms are not shared equally among different members of society’. That is an apt scenario in the Sahelian region. The top-heavy polluters in the global political economy are not in the Sahelian region. Conversely, the UNDP 2019 Human Development Index poignantly shows that out of 189 countries, those in the Sahelian region occupy the bottom tier of rankings. This is, therefore, the opportune time to take a holistic approach to address the situation in the true sense of ecological justice. For this approach to be successful in tackling the root causes of poverty resulting from the climate crisis, we would need to rely upon an entire array of experts, university scholars, policy-makers, think tanks, and other stakeholders, since co-benefits and sustainability require a multi-disciplinary outlook.
Co-Benefits and how they relate to Sustainability in the Sahelian region
What is a co-benefit?
Sustainability as a fundamental principle of law and governance also means ‘maintenance of the integrity of the Earth’s ecological systems’. Federico Cheever and John C. Dernbach (2015) stressed the damage caused to both human beings and the environment by conventional development methods and discussed an all-encompassing approach under the principle of ‘sustainable development’ which comprises the ‘integration of development and environmental objectives and considerations (including environmental quality, social justice, and economic viability) in making deliberations’. From every description - be it the interconnected imagery - of the three legged stand or circular image of the environment, society and economy, this admonition is important for all the stakeholders from individuals to countries (not excluding north-south, south-south and triangular cooperation (SSTC) – on how best to tackle the hydra-headed Sahelian crises.
This paper is operating in an inter-disciplinary realm as succeeding paragraphs unfold. Climate change is the causal agent for impoverishment (of people and the environment) hence the principles of equity will embrace intragenerational and intergenerational equity and a precautionary approach in the silhouette. The restoration of the ecology of the Sahel would be beneficial to the good health and well-being of present and future generations (people and environment) not only for the region but also as part of the bigger picture of saving our planet and improving the living conditions of millions of people.
The Brundtland report which defines Sustainable development as ‘development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs, paints a grim picture about the prospects for the planet. The situation in the Sahel portrays it clearly given the multiple, intersecting challenges under discussion. However, as the world ponders a well-coordinated Planetary Integrity Project (PIP), it is feasible for our present-day human civilization to deploy available knowledge, science and technology to restore the ecological integrity of the Sahelian region. The broadening of the obligations, responsibilities and ecological rights on both states and humans in Sustainability studies as postulated by Bosselmann (2017) in our ‘common interest in governance for sustainability’ leads us to the concept of ‘co-benefits’ in relation to the Sahelian region.
It is asserted that environmental economists coined the term ‘Co-Benefits’ in the 1990s as reference to ‘the additional development benefits of climate policies’ (Miyatsuka and Zusman 2010). The OECD and IPCC and others in the 2000s describe the term as ‘policies with multiple goals, at least one of which was to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions’ and today, the term denotes how to ‘promote the implementation of policies and projects aiming for both climate change mitigation and development, linking global and local concerns within one measure or many’. After all, ‘the increase in GHG in a particular country or region of the world is thus likely to have consequences in very distant areas of the globe’. ‘Co-benefits’, therefore, have broad, narrow, global and local appeal. For example, the 5th IPCC report gives a health twist by defining it as ‘positive effects on human health that arise from interventions to reduce emissions of those climate-altering pollutants (CAPs) that warm the planet or vice versa’. Climate change in addition to harming the environment also affects persons and property and it is caused from different sources from states, businesses, farmers, individual consumers and drivers among others. This should be the fundamental reason why we need to use different interconnected means or methods for the same goal of fighting climate change. Admittedly, the call for the deployment of the concept ‘co-benefits’ could apply to many other areas that space would not permit. For example, a policy to protect the quality of water could unfurl other co-benefits such as protecting fish habitat, help reduce air pollution – which ‘co-benefit will also improve human respiratory health.
This paper proceeds with the integrated policy paradigm on ‘Co-Benefits’ provided by Alison Smith (2013) for reducing the GHG effects under the following headings, (cleaner air, greener land, safe and secure energy, less waste, a stronger economy, health and well-being), which are equally relevant to approaching the climate-induced Sahelian development paradox:
A policy intervention to improve air quality in the Sahel will bring massive tangible health benefits for the peoples in Africa and Europe as well as the environment. There is a huge potential to restore Africa as a major carbon sink in the world. The continent once boasted of seven million square kilometres of forests but unfortunately, a third of that is gone due to cutting forests for charcoal burning. The cooking with wood and the use of kerosene lamps lead to the emission and inhalation of smoke and soot by those in the kitchen especially the women and children. A coherent policy to provide improved cooking methods or stoves could facilitate poverty reduction in the region (Zulu, Leo C., & Robert B. Richardson 2013). The health implications such as respiratory diseases and blindness among women in the region are dire leading to high infant and maternal mortality rates. Meanwhile, in other parts of the same region such as Nigeria, Algeria, Egypt, Libya and Cameroun, a massive volume of natural gas is flared in the air by the multinational oil exploration and exploitation companies; a situation which is equally adding to global CO2 emissions and greenhouse effects. The oil companies, oil producing countries and international finance institutions such as the I.M.F and the World Bank can collaborate to achieve ‘zero flaring’ by committing to the existing principles of international environment law. Instead of wasting gas, it could be captured and processed for distribution at designated mobile outlets throughout the region to promote health and protect the environment. A deliberate policy to use the abundant liquefied natural gas which is being wasted with careless abandon will create jobs, protect the environment, trees and reduce air pollution for good health.
Air pollution from nearby industrialised Europe just to the north of the Sahara-Sahel region would have to be tackled through a polluter pays principle (PPP). The main stakeholders such as the European Union, African Union and the Community of Sahel-Saharan States (CEN-SAD) would have to engage even in the face of potential reluctance from oil companies (with profit cuts staring in the face) and the E.U. public protestations over carbon tax. However, there is a price to ‘pay for civilization’. Even those in African villages and cities are impacted by globalization. Some have access to international mobile money transfer applications and can be assisted to form part of local and global efforts to protect the planet. Those in Europe and other developed countries who are the beneficiaries of a globalised political economy should also be willing to pay more taxes that could be used to implement global treaties meant for saving the planet, as envisioned in the notions of global climate justice (Gerhard Reese, 2016), as well as helping to improve the circumstances of the marginalised in developing countries.
The long-term plan to switch to green technology within the E.U. is a silver lining since it would have a positive impact on the Sahara-Sahel region by reducing trans-boundary air pollution from Europe. Vice-versa, it is in Europe’s interest to have clean air from the Sahel region; the Sahara being the largest source of desert dust in the world. These dust storms have obvious health consequences for people in the Sahel region, Europe, and the Middle East (Abate, Dejen & Shahid Akhtar 1994). With an effective environmental communication strategy, all the stakeholders can be invited to the table to take action that would yield dividends and co-benefits through a cleaner air policy.
Some general concerns would have to be addressed in the quest for cleaner air in the region and neighboring regions. We noticed the market price of petroleum products crash in the wake of the global Covid-19 (Corona) virus pandemic. Would the availability of cheap fossil fuel lead to a resurgence of indiscriminate gas emissions in the Sahel and Europe? How can there be cleaner air in the Sahel when oil fields and storage facilities are being set ablaze in war-torn Libya? On-going regional and global initiatives to combat climate change must embrace peace and mediation initiatives in the Sahel as well.
African countries are embarking on a mission to expand trade and industrialization. The African Continental Free Trade Area (ACFTA) is in full force and continental projects are being launched such as Trans Saharan highways and rail-lines. Cross-border trade and movement is going to increase market and industrial carbon footprints in the Sahel region. What regulations are in place to ensure the use of clean technology in the anticipated fast pace of development in the region? Perhaps the African countries would have to remain committed to their obligations to implement the Paris Agreement in order to achieve both continental plans for development and global climate targets. As an example, the countries hard-hit by climate change in the Sahel should collectively work towards the Paris Agreement (Article 4.19): ‘All parties should formulate and communicate long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategies, mindful of their common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in the light of different national circumstances’.
The combination of climate policy, afforestation programs and international development cooperation will improve the sustainability of agriculture in the Sahel. It is a well-known fact that the Sahel is located on top of the biggest aquifers on the African continent. Why, then, do we have untold desolation, drought, famine and aridity in this part of the world? Less than half of the population in the Sahel has access to potable water. The Sahelian countries can draw valuable lessons from the Israelis in greening a desert. By using safe technology, the underground water could be tapped to improve sanitation and health as well as extended for regional ‘greening’ irrigation programs. The region has the most youthful population in the world with 64.5% of the inhabitants less than 25 years of age. Ten of the countries within the Sahel cover over 7 million kilometres and have close to 135 million inhabitants.
Education programs to train the youth, diplomatic technical support programs aimed at long-term climate change mitigation and adaptation, and tree planting initiatives such as ‘Trees for Peace’ and the ‘Great Green Wall’ (GGW) can provide employment for the teeming youth, green the Sahel, and add to existing global carbon sinks and reservoirs. Such regional greening initiative would lead to the ecological regeneration of a landscape destroyed over the years by climate change. Greater foliage cover will support more sustainable agriculture for feeding the poor and the hungry. Family planning, peace/conflict resolution education, and sustainability awareness in the population would have the added benefit of reducing the adverse impact of overpopulation.
The recently signed international initiative (between the UNCCD and the Korea Forest Service (KFS)) to undertake peace forest plantations could serve as a useful guide to promote peace through land restoration in countries recovering from the throes of conflict. Without peace, there cannot be any meaningful afforestation and agricultural activities. A careful mix of climate change education, training, public awareness, access to information, and technology transfer will enhance traditional farming practices. Locally produced food could be part of school feeding programs which may, in turn, lead to higher school attendance and enrollment.
Safe and Secure Energy
A safe and secure renewable energy policy implementation in the Sahel has the potential for improving rainfall patterns and agriculture in the region. Only 31% of the people in the Sahel has access to electricity in a region endowed with a huge clean energy (solar and wind) potential of 13.9 billion KWh/year compared to global electricity consumption of only 20million KWh/year.
It is possible to produce enough renewable energy in the Sahara-Sahel region for exports to Europe to help reduce European dependence on fossil fuels which contribute to high CO2 emissions. Whilst achieving this, the poor countries would earn more foreign exchange and create green jobs with the added advantage of inching towards achieving global warming targets.
The vast expanse of the Sahel-Sahara desert most of which is lying waste due to environmental degradation can be converted to better use through science and innovation. The climate policies to achieve cleaner air and a greener region would curb the current rate of wastage for the sake of both humans and the conservation of the environment.
A Stronger Economy
Climate change and poverty are mutually reinforcing in the Sahelian region. No climate action plan will be successful in the Sahel if such a plan has no strategy for poverty eradication or reduction. As a guide, the Sahelian nations would have to pick useful lessons from the destructive side of the development trajectory of the industrialized nations by adopting a different path to sustainable economic development which must tackle systemic inequality, reverse unbridled consumerism, promote technology transfer & ecosystem protection, strengthen human and social capital among others.
The Sahel region is agrarian and for that matter, any engagement through development cooperation to promote sustainable agriculture must tackle the controversial issue of farm subsidies to farmers in some industrialized countries. The region is well known for its indigenous animal husbandry. The modernization of agro-processing and value addition to animal products will create jobs and cut down on post-harvest loss whilst adding to income stability for the farmers.
Health and Wellbeing
Famine and drought have caused stunted growth among children in the region for far too long. By tackling the climate crisis, there would be enough designated fertile land suitable for cultivation to feed malnourished families. The region largely depends on traditional medicine using herbs and plants. The situation is no different in Burkina Faso. The proposed greening and irrigation projects would have to promote the planting of endangered medicinal plants to cater for the primary healthcare needs of the region’s indigenous people.
Modern agriculturalists and farmers have something to learn from the cross-border nomadic pastoralists in the Sahel. All year round, they move thousands of miles on foot in search of pasture. The free roaming animals and humans in the African Savannah have healthy lifestyle implications for both humans, animals and the ecology through the spread of manure. This traditional farming method should have less carbon footprint than mechanized and subsidized animal husbandry.
Migration/Citizenship and Climate
Besides the broad categories provided by Alison Smith (above), we could discuss a possible solution to forced migration/displacements using co-benefits. West Africa, arguably, is ‘the most mobile part of the continent’ and ‘people in the Sahel, in particular, have a long tradition of population mobility that includes a multitude of migration patterns and trajectories’ (Cordell et al. 1996; Rain 1999; IOM 2014). Oftentimes, the pastoralists move within or across neighbouring countries depending on seasonal factors. For example, the pastoralists move their herds of cattle during the dry period to ‘wetter areas in the south’ (Ballo 2009; Hein et al. 2009).
The constant clashes between the farmers and pastoralists will become a thing of the past if there is enough green pasture and fertile land for peaceful co-habitation. The Agricultural Departments in the region could create designated corridors for animals across the region and enforce rules of trespass to ensure that farm animals cannot stray to crop fields. After a season or two, the divided corridors for crops and animals could be shifted through shifting and rotational farming. The crop farmers will benefit from the manure left by the animals whilst the animals on the other hand will feed on the left-over corn and millet husks after harvest. This symbiosis will be successful if the statistical authorities could take enough data on the number of humans and animals roaming from country to country across the region. Most of these are stateless nomads who have little access to citizenship and political rights. The compilation of such data would inform policy makers and states in the region to decide on burden-sharing measures to accord them with citizenship and voting rights. This is feasible if the Sahelian states can come out of their conventional straight-jacket ‘self-interest national sovereignty mentality’ and work cooperatively as a unified region to confront the common enemy – climate change and its multiplier effects.
Data management as foreseen in the Global Compact on Refugees would be significant for national, regional security as well as humanitarian operations in the region whilst same information could be relied upon by the Food and Agricultural Agency of the U.N. and the departments of Agriculture for purposes of planning and promoting green economy and agriculture in the Sahel.
The following general recommendations are necessary for the materialization of co-benefits in the Sahel region:
- Strategic decision-making
Political agitations and resistance to climate mitigation and adaptation measures are common to all regions. In western developed countries, there is vehement resistance towards the introduction of carbon tax in spite of its obvious merits to protect the environment. That same kind of resistance can cause political and social upheavals in the Sahelian region as we have seen with the abrupt ban on the use of charcoal by households in N’djamena, Chad. The way to public acceptance of national decisions to protect the common environment for governments and the people is to fully engage all members of society in a national dialogue for strategic decision-making.
A major defect in modern governance is the failure of some nations to link the issue of human rights to environmental rights. A correction must start from the national level with the adoption of constitutional environmental rights. This must go hand-in-hand with the crafting of innovative curriculum for the educational systems in the Sahel to address anachronistic practices. The region has to abolish its disadvantages of child marriage, polygamy and female genital mutilation (FGM). Through a school system which is providing adequate inculcation of human rights and ecological rights, a new generation will be willing to embrace change and discard negative practices (which are injurious to the environment and female empowerment) in history’s dustbin. Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger (all in the Sahel) record some of the highest incidences of child marriages in the world. Children ‘conscripted’ into marriage are sometimes below the age of 10! Constitutional provisions and the school system can change attitudes to remove the most constrictive bottlenecks to development through co-benefits.
Another dimension for strategic decision-making is for the countries in the Sahel to make strong proposals for the inclusion of climate strategies in their trade and investment negotiations with the rest of the world. Through the principle of co-benefits to address climate issues, poverty and dependency on foreign aid, the Sahel countries may push the agenda by the African Union to negotiate a harmonized trade agreement with western countries. At the moment, there are too many ‘divide and rule’ trading arrangements in the Sahel such as (A.G.O.A) which is offered as a benevolent opportunity by the U.S.A to sub-Saharan Africa, whilst the G.S.P regulates trade between Nigeria and the European Union. Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire enjoy E.P.A with the E.U. and the latter offers E.B.A to the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in the same region.
The continent’s resources have been exploited over the past four centuries. Prior to that, the Sahel region had been subjected to different forms of slave trade mainly by Arabs spanning many centuries. It is time to discuss how the continent and her historical Western allies as well as emerging economies (BRICS) and the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) can address trade and environmental issues while taking into consideration global climate mitigation and adaptation schemes.
The giant multinational companies operating in the region could demonstrate their commitment to fighting climate change by exercising corporate social responsibility. It will be a win-win partnership. The multinationals will continue to operate and make profits by harnessing the abundant renewable resources in the region through investments and technology transfer and by injecting financial resources as well in environmental protection.
The longstanding accusations against the multinational companies could be curbed if the Sahelian countries improve economic governance by declaring some form of amnesty for past tax-evasions and require the multinationals to be transparent, from now onwards, with the pledge that all duly reported taxes would be ploughed back into ecological restoration projects. The estimated billions of dollars which hitherto had been illicitly siphoned out of the continent would be used in clean air and greening projects across the region. Both governments and giant companies must subject projects with likely social and environmental impacts to the equator principles as part of environmental and governance sustainable development reform. Ironically, in spite of widespread poverty levels, it is a region endowed with natural resources. The (OECD 2014) provides a peek into the global value chains in Africa. Some of the well-known corporate giants operating in the region are: Areva (Uranium), KLM-Air France, (Aviation), Apple, Facebook, Samsung, MTN, Vodafone (Rare earth/ICT), Toyota, Nissan, BMW, VW, Daimler-Benz (auto), Anglo-Gold Ashanti, (Gold). The vast resources of the continent must benefit the people not just foreign interests.
The Sahelian region does not need to re-invent the wheel. They (Sahelian states) must individually and collectively incorporate the Sustainable Development Goals (S.D.G’s) in their national and regional development plans if they want maximum buy-in (financial and technology transfer) from developed countries. International financial institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund must also support the agenda for sustainable development in the Sahel and assist these nations to achieve the proposed co-benefit programs/policies.
- Coordination and cut down on duplication
This paper cannot over-emphasize the relevance of Regional Economic Communities (R.E.Cs) as the best form of cooperative schemes through which the international community can work together to achieve climate goals/targets. There is, however, a downside to the ‘duplication’ of sub-regional blocs in the Sahel region. During the transition from the (pre)colonial to the post-colonial era, the region had been fragmented into Francophone, Anglophone, Lusophone and Arabophone blocs depending on each country’s (pre)colonial history. That balkanization (with ethnic/racial and religious undertones) mutated into new groupings with different agendas. The following are some of the numerous R.E.Cs in the region: West African Economic and Monetary Union, (WAEMU/UEMOA), Volta Basin Authority, (VBA), Mano River Union (M.R.U)., Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Community of Sahel-Saharan States (CEN-SAD), Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC), Arab Maghreb Union (A.M.U.), and the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS). The competing groupings whether from the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, La Francophonie or Commonwealth spheres have the tendency to complicate the integration process as well as undermine member states’ ability and resources to cope with the different agendas and exigencies particularly in their quest to confront climate change – a ‘super-wicked problem’ ‘from a policy and legal point of view’ (Lazarus, 2009, 1153). A frightening development was the different national attitudes toward the adoption of Genetically Modified Organisms (G.M.Os) in the region. The countries are in different stages of dealing with this issue. There is strong resistance to the blanket adoption of GMOs in Ghana (anglophone) whilst Burkina Faso is leading the pack of francophones in the adoption of this technology, especially in the production of cotton. This lack of consensus on GMOs is a clear case of sovereign decision making as opposed to a regional policy on GMOs. The Sahelian countries ought to tune their differing national pitches into a harmonious orchestra for combatting climate change on the international stage. In the absence of that, the picture would remain one of a hapless, discordant and jarring cacophony in the midst of a fast expanding and all-consuming desert ready to wipe out nations and their peoples. The common enemy is climate change and the sub-regional and regional bodies operating in the Sahel must align their goals through a new form of effective inter-regionalism. This is feasible if the countries can participate actively in the coordination roles of the African Union and the U.N. using the roadmaps already provided namely; the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Paris Accord and UNCCD among others.
- Learn from past mistakes on development assistance
In our rush to address the link between climate change and poverty in the region, the policy makers, governments and the stakeholders would have to learn from the documented mistakes of the past. Answers must be found to why an approximate sum of U.S.$1 trillion in aid since the 1940s has not worked in Africa or why donor support has not achieved the desired results. Fixing the global climate problem and related challenges such as poverty through co-benefits would require a ‘global network of cooperation among people’ with the right mix of investments in natural and human resources, business, infrastructure, public institutions and knowledge.
Avoiding previous mistakes also means the capacity to mainstream the implementation of the SDGs in national, regional and global governance. A case in point is the example set by Ghana through its adoption of the Coordinated Program of Economic and Social Development Policies (2017-2024). At the continental level, the African Union through (Agenda 2063) is setting the pace for a single path development paradigm. The development partners should not impose prescriptions from the top but must operate from a ‘bottom- up’ perspective in their dealings with the Sahelian countries to prepare home-made remedies. The combined climate and poverty reduction action plans may take a dosage from the Accra Agenda for Action (2008) which identified three key medications: (a) country ownership to accelerate progress, (b) building more effective and inclusive partnerships and (c) achieving and assessing development results – and openly accounting for and learning from these results.
- Co-benefits and the indigenous peoples in the Sahel region
The Sahel is going through unprecedented transformations. It is daunting for indigenous people to embrace modernity with its scientific and technological marvels and to join the fight against climate change because of their long held religious and cultural traditions that cannot easily be overridden or cast aside. The conservatives do not have to worry about a so-called ‘obliteration’ of their indigenous way of life. Public education and mutual understanding are necessary to ensure that the Paris Agreement is given the chance to prevail. In its preamble, there is a reference to the rights of indigenous peoples and (Article 4.7) dwells on climate ‘Mitigation co-benefits’ as a necessary tool to usher in ‘economic diversification plans’ and contribute to mitigation outcomes.’ Stakeholders, governments and indigenous authorities must find space for cooperation in the Paris Agreement (Article 7.5) which states ‘adaptation action should follow a country-driven, gender-responsive, participatory and fully transparent approach, taking into consideration vulnerable groups, communities and ecosystems, and should be based on and guided by the best available science and, as appropriate, traditional knowledge, knowledge of indigenous peoples and local knowledge systems, with a view to integrating adaptation into relevant socio-economic and environment policies and actions, where appropriate…’. That re-assuring provision in the Paris Agreement is further guaranteed by provisions in the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous peoples, the International Convention on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, as well as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Traditions and science can therefore be mutually reinforcing in the Sahel for combatting climate change. Peace would be an added dividend that would enable sustainable ecotourism and heritage tourism, adding to the livelihood and sustenance of the region’s indigenous people.
From the preceding paragraphs, we have addressed the essence of co-benefits in the Sahel. It is possible to find antidotes to the climate crisis and its multiplier effects using co-benefits as a main strategy. Through co-benefits we can achieve a domino effect for strengthening the implementation of the SDGs (all seventeen (17) integrated goals in our rear mirror). Addressing the identified challenges in silos might end up compounding the existing crises. A cross-cutting and interdisciplinary approach would provide the necessary space around the revolving axis of co-benefits for all the stakeholders - to unleash inclusive and sustainable development in the Sahel region. It is near impossible for the Sahelian countries alone to implement co-benefits to achieve the SDGs. According to the U.N. Plan, the implementation of the SDGs in the Sahel is projected to cost between $140.25bn. and $157.39bn per annum in the first phase from 2018 to 2022.
There will be no victors if humanity fails to address the ecological disasters in the Sahel. There will be no winners in Africa or Europe if the north-south divide cannot be bridged for the sake of protecting the planet. Fundamental conflicts between humans and the environment, between state and sub-regions, between rural (agrarian) and urban (technological) lifestyles would only create more miseries for defenseless women, the aged, and children. Irresponsible corporate culture and heartless profiteering would end up destroying markets. This is the more reason why the above listed conflicts and others must be resolved to enable all lifestyles/pursuits to thrive in peace and prosperity. This is achievable if we can individually and collectively implement the existing rich body of literature on sustainability and well-crafted national and global sustainable development frameworks/agreements.
In conclusion, our understanding of sustainability based on the mutually reinforcing concepts of Environment, Society and Economy, should be compelling enough to bring all competing interest groups to a common ground in order to nurture sustainable, peaceful co-habitation and co-benefits for addressing the climate and humanitarian crises in the Sahelian and West African region. The clock is ticking. The long march towards global sustainability is achievable in just seventeen goals. Hundreds of millions of people could benefit from just seventeen building blocks put into their rightful places in the Sahel and adjoining regions.
“If the costs of climate change mitigation action can be offset, at least partially, by co-benefits, this would facilitate making more ambitious efforts, including by reducing the political resistance to change. The support of a wider range of groups, representing different interests, could be mobilized for climate change action”
 Sustainable Development Brief, the Co-Benefits of Climate Change Mitigation. No.2 (Jan. 2016). Geneva, Switzerland: United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). Pp.4. https://i.unu.edu/media/ias.unu.edu-en/news/11145/UNU-IAS-Policy-Brief-No.-3-2015.pdf
 Adam Day and Jessica Caus, ‘Conflict Prevention in the Sahel – Emerging Practice across the U.N.’ (United Nations University: New York, 2019)
 Stephen A. Harmon, Terror and Insurgency in the Sahara-Sahel Region: Corruption, Contraband, Jihad and the Mali War of 2012 – 2013. Routledge: N.Y. (2014) Chapter 1
 UN Environment Programme, World Atlas of Desertification (Sevenoaks, U.K.: Edward Arnold, 1992) sourced from Hulme, Mike, and Mick Kelly. "Exploring the Links between Desertification and Climate Change." Environment, vol. 35, no. 6, 1993, pp. 4. ProQuest, https://search-proquest-com.proxy.bib.uottawa.ca/docview/224030128?accountid=14701.
 Hulme, Mike, and Mick Kelly. "Exploring the Links between Desertification and Climate Change." Environment, vol. 35, no. 6, 1993, pp. 4. ProQuest, https://search-proquest-com.proxy.bib.uottawa.ca/docview/224030128?accountid=14701.
 OECD 2009 sourced from (Victoria Van Der Land). Supra note 5 at22.
 Hulme, Mike, and Mick Kelly. Supra note 7 at 4.
 Adam Day and Jessica Caus, supra note 2 at 12.
 John T. Hardy. Climate Change: Causes, Effects, and Solutions. (2003) Wiley & Sons Ltd: West Sussex. pp. 19, 20,26
 Hulme, Mike, and Mick Kelly. Supra note 7 at 4.
 Ibid at 4.
 Adam Day and Jessica Caus, supra note 2 at 12.
 Eric Schmitt. ‘Terrorism Threat in West Africa Soars as U.S. Weighs Troop Cuts’ in The New York Times. Feb. 27, 2020. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/27/world/africa/terrorism-west-africa.html
 U.N.H.C.R. ‘In 12 Months Sahel Violence displaces more than 700,000 in Burkina Faso’. U.N: Geneva. 21 Feb, 2020. https://www.unhcr.org/news/briefing/2020/2/5e4fa0204/12-months-sahel-violence-displaces-700000-burkina-faso.html
 Errol Mendes. Global Governance, Human Rights and International Law: Combatting the Tragic Flaw. Routledge: London.2014. pp. 81-93.
 Sarah Opitz Stapleton, et.al. ‘Climate Change, Migration and Displacement: The need for a risk-informed and coherent approach’. (ODI & UNDP). No. 2017. Pp.6-29. https://www.odi.org/sites/odi.org.uk/files/resource-documents/11874.pdf
 World Commission on Environment and Development, Our Common Future, (Brundtland report) (1987) pp.43
 U.N. ‘Declaration of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment’. (Stockholm Declaration). 5-16 June, 1972.
 Nathalie J. Chalifour. ‘Environmental Justice and the Charter: Do Environmental Injustices Infringe Sections 7 & 15 of the Charter?’ in Journal of Environmental Law and Practice. 28J. Env. L. & Prac. 89. (Dec. 2015). Thomson Reuters Canada Ltd. Pp. 3.
 Data feeds from Oliver et. Al. (2016) culled from Mahendra Sethi, Jose A. Puppim de Oliveira (eds) Mainstreaming Climate Co-Benefits in Indian Cities Post Habitat III Innovations & Reforms. Springer: Singapore (2018). Pp. 8 lists the biggest CO2 emitting countries in 2015 in the following order: China, U.S., India, Russia, Japan, Germany, Canada, Iran, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Brazil, Mexico, Australia, South Africa, U.K., Turkey, Italy, France and Poland. This list also reflects to some extent, the historical emitters’ league table since the Industrial Revolution.
 U.N.D.P. Human Development Reports. U.N: N.Y. (2019). The HDI ranking is as follows from bottom: Niger (189), Chad (187), Mali (184), Burkina Faso (182), Sierra Leone (181), Guinea Bissau (178), Liberia (176), Guinea (174), Togo (167), Senegal (166), Cote d’Ivoire (165), Benin (I63), Mauritania (161), Nigeria (158), Ghana (142). http://hdr.undp.org/en/content/2019-human-development-index-ranking
 Klaus Bosselmann The Principle of Sustainability: Transforming Law and Governance (2nd Edition. Routledge: London (2017) pp. 118 - 122
 Sachs, Jeffrey. The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time. New York: Penguin Press, 2005. Print.
 Klause Bosselmann, Supra note 25 at 5.
 Federico Cheever and John C. Dernbach ‘Sustainable Development and its Discontents’ in Transnational Environmental Law, Oct. 2015, Vo. 4(2) pp.247-287
 Bob Willard. The Sustainability Advantage: Seven Business Case Benefits of a Triple Bottom Line Gabriola Island, B.C: New Society Publishers, 2002. (Introduction: figs 1.7, 1.10, 1.14).
 International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) ‘Promoting and Supporting Collaboration among countries of the South’ culled from IFAD website. IFAD:Rome (2020). https://www.ifad.org/en/sstc
 Klaus Bosselmann. Supra Note 25 at 69-76.
 Brundtland report, supra note 20 at section 3.27
 Klaus Bosselmann. supra note 25 at 42-53.
 Ibid at 183-203.
 Miyatsuka & Zusman (2010) sourced from Magali Dreyfus, “The Co-Benefits Approach at the Local Level: Legal Perspectives” in Policy Brief (No. 3, 2015), United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability. pp1. https://i.unu.edu/media/ias.unu.edu-en/news/11145/UNU-IAS-Policy-Brief-No.-3-2015.pdf
 Magali Dreyfus, “The Co-Benefits Approach at the Local Level: Legal Perspectives” in Policy Brief (No. 3, 2015), United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability. https://i.unu.edu/media/ias.unu.edu-en/news/11145/UNU-IAS-Policy-Brief-N...
 Ibid at pp.1
 Sandrine Maljean-Dubois. ‘Climate Change Litigation’ in Max Planck Encyclopedia of Procedural Law, 2019. Halshs-02281274
 Kirk R. Smith, Alistair Woodward et. al. (Co-ordinating Lead Authors) “Human Health: Impacts, Adaptation, and Co-Benefits in: Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability. Part A: Global and Sectoral Aspects. Contribution of Working Group II to the 5th Assessment Report of the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change, (Field, C.B., V.R. Barros, et. Al. eds.) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge U.K. & N.Y., U.S.A. pp 709-754. https://www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/2018/02/WGIIAR5-Chap11_FINAL.pdf
 Alison Smith. The Climate Bonus Co-Benefits of Climate Policy. Routledge: London (2013) pp. 1 - 333
 The World Bank “Global Gas Flaring Reduction Partnership (GGFR): Top 30 Flaring Countries Table 2014-2018. The World Bank Group: Washington D.C. (2020). http://pubdocs.worldbank.org/en/887251581002821897/Revised-2014-2018-flare-volumes-estimates.pdf
 Ghana Business News ‘Cabinet Approves Polluter Pays Principle’ Dec. 8, 2011. https://www.ghanabusinessnews.com/2011/12/08/cabinet-approves-polluter-pays-principle/
 Jeffrey D. Sachs. The Price of Civilization: Economics and Ethics after the Fall. Randon House: Canada (2011). pp. 209-236.
 Abate, Dejen and Shahid Akhtar. “Information and Knowledge Inputs: Combatting Desertification in Africa and Transboundary Air Pollution in Europe.” Environmental Policy and Law 24.2 (1994): 71–71. Web. file:///C:/Users/mawut/AppData/Local/Temp/24EnvtlPolyL71-1.pdf
 A.S. Goudie and N.J. Middleton. ‘Saharan Dust Storms: Nature and Consequences’ in Earth-Science Reviews vol. 56 issues 1-4. Dec. 2001. Pp. 179-204. https://www-sciencedirect-com.proxy.bib.uottawa.ca/science/article/pii/S0012825201000678?via%3Dihub#!
 African Union Press Release ‘Operational Phase of the African Continental Free Trade Area is Launched at Niger Summit of the African Union’ July 7, 2019. Culled from the website of African Union Commission: Addis Ababa. https://au.int/en/pressreleases/20190707/operational-phase-african-continental-free-trade-area-launched-niger-summit
 A.U. Blueprint for Continental Development: “Agenda 2063: The Africa We Want” Sept. 2015. Sourced from website of African Union Commission: Addis Ababa. https://au.int/sites/default/files/documents/36204-doc-agenda2063_popular_version_en.pdf
 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Report of the Conference of the parties on its twenty-first session, held in Paris from 30 November to 13 December 2015 adopted the Paris Agreement which is quoted from: (FCCC/CP/2015/10/Add.1) 29 Jan. 2016 https://unfccc.int/resource/docs/2015/cop21/eng/10a01.pdf
 U.N. Support Plan for the Sahel: Working Together for a Prosperous and Peaceful Sahel (2018) United Nations: N.Y. pp. 6 https://www.un.org/africarenewal/sites/www.un.org.africarenewal/files/English%20Summary%20Report_0.pdf
 Meena Bhandari. ‘Water Scarcity in the Sahel’ Pulitzer Center. Washington D.C.: 2020. https://pulitzercenter.org/your-story/water-scarcity-sahel
 Ramanathan, S. “Greening the Desert the Israeli Way: Is It Good Economics?” Economic and Political Weekly, vol. 29, no. 9, 1994, pp. 476–477. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/4400853. Accessed 8 Mar. 2020.
 U.N. Support Plan for the Sahel. Supra Note 53 at 7.
 Carl Haub and Toshiko Kaneda, 2014 World Population Data Sheet (Washington, DC: Population Reference Bureau, 2014) sourced from John F. May, Jean Pierre Guengant et. al. ‘Demographic Challenges of the Sahel’ in Population Reference Bureau. Washington:2015 accessed on 8th March, 2020. https://www.prb.org/sahel-demographics/
 Ernest Harsch ‘The New Face of the Sahel: Grassroots Initiatives Promote Changes in Livelihoods’ in Africa Renewal. Aug.- Nov. 2017. https://www.un.org/africarenewal/magazine/august-november-2017/new-face-sahel
 Saley, Inoussa et al. “The Possible Role of the Sahel Greenbelt on the Occurrence of Climate Extremes over the West African Sahel.” Atmospheric Science Letters 20.8 (2019): Web. https://rmets.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/asl.927
 ‘UNCCD is ready to welcome countries to the new Peace Forest Initiative’ (a global initiative to promote peace through land restoration which was signed on 28 January, 2020 in Bonn by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the Korea Forest Service (KFS) https://www.unccd.int/news-events/unccd-ready-welcome-countries-new-peace-forest-initiative
 Paris Agreement. Supra Note 52 at Article 12.
 Jeffrey Sachs. ‘End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for our Time’ in European Journal of Dental Education. Wiley online Library. 15 Fe., 2008. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1600-0579.2007.00476.x
 Li, Yan et al. “Climate Model Shows Large-Scale Wind and Solar Farms in the Sahara Increase Rain and Vegetation.” Science 361.6406 (2018): 1019–1022. https://science-sciencemag-org.proxy.bib.uottawa.ca/content/361/6406/1019
 U.N. Support Plan for the Sahel. Supra note 53 at 7.
 Jackson, Tim. “Prosperity Without Growth: Planning for a Sustainable economy.(The Economics Revolution).” Pacific Ecologist 19 (2010). Pp. 10-19.
 Chalifour, Nathalie J., and Heather McLeod-Kilmurray. “The Carrots and Sticks of Sustainable Farming in Canada.” Vermont Journal of Environmental Law 17.3 (2016): 303–344. Print.
 Hume, D. A, C. B. A WHitelaw, and A. L Archibald. “The Future of Animal Production: Improving Productivity and Sustainability.” The Journal of Agricultural Science 149.S1 (2011): 9–16. Web.
 Léa Bonkian, Rakiswendé Yerbanga, et al. ‘Plants against Malaria and Mosquitoes in Sahel region of Burkina Faso: An Ethno-botanical Survey’ in International Journal of Herbal Medicine, AkiNik Publications 2017, 5. hal-02411013. Pp 1-7.
 Cordell et al. 1996; Rain 1999; IOM 2014 sourced from (Victoria Van Der Land at supra note 5 at 12.
 Ballo 2009; Hein et al. 2009 sourced from Ibid. (Victoria Van Der Land. supra note 5 at 12.
Atuguba, Raymond A., et al. “Statelessness in West Africa: An Assessment of Stateless Populations and Legal, Policy, and Administrative Frameworks in Ghana.” In Journal on Migration and Human Security, Jan. 2020, doi:10.1177/2331502419900771. Pp.14-31.
 Affricafeeds.com news report. ‘1.5 Million Fulanis in Ghana Protest treatment as Non-Citizens’ sourced from GhanaWeb website. March 7, 2020. https://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/1-5-million-Fulanis-in-Ghana-protest-treatment-as-non-citizens-887500
 U.N. Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Part II Global Compact on Refugees. 73rd Session of the U.N. Gen. Assembly (2018) ‘Global Compact of Refugees’ Supplement No. 12 (A/73/12(Part II). Sections 3.3. paragraphs 45-48. https://www.unhcr.org/gcr/GCR_English.pdf
 Carattini, Stefano, Maria Carvalho, and Samuel Fankhauser. “Overcoming Public Resistance to Carbon Taxes.” IDEAS Working Paper Series from RePEc (2018). http://eprints.lse.ac.uk.proxy.bib.uottawa.ca/88137/1/Carattini_Overcoming-public-resistance_Published.pdf
 Klaus Bosselmann. Supra Note 25 at 127-175.
 Potts, Malcolm, Courtney Henderson, and Martha Campbell. “The Sahel: A Malthusian Challenge?” Environmental and Resource Economics 55.4 (2013): 501–512. Web.
 The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage: Girls Not Brides. ‘Education is the Key: Ending Child Marriage in the Sahel’. (2020). https://www.girlsnotbrides.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Child-marriage-in-the-Sahel.pdf
 Executive Office of the President of the U.S.A. ‘African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA)’. Washington: May, 2000. https://ustr.gov/issue-areas/trade-development/preference-programs/african-growth-and-opportunity-act-agoa
 European Commission. ‘Generalized Scheme of Preferences (GSP)’ culled from E.C. website. Brussels:25 Feb. 2020. https://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/countries-and-regions/development/generalised-scheme-of-preferences/
 Ibid. ‘Overview of Economic Partnership Agreements’. E.C. website. Brussels:) Jan. 2020. https://trade.ec.europa.eu/doclib/docs/2009/september/tradoc_144912.pdf
 Ibid. ‘Everything But Arms’ (European Commission). Jan. 2020. https://trade.ec.europa.eu/tradehelp/everything-arms
 Wright, John. The Trans-Saharan Slave Trade. Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon ;: Routledge, 2007. Web.
 Morgera, Elisa. “From Corporate Social Responsibility to Accountability Mechanisms.” Harnessing Foreign Investment to Promote Environmental Protection: Incentives and Safeguards. Cambridge University Press, 2013. Pp. 9-19.
 Christensen, J. (2011). The looting continues: Tax havens and corruption. Critical Perspectives on International Business, 7(2), 177-196.
 Weber, Olaf. Equator Principles Reporting : Do Financial Institutions Meet Their Goals? . Waterloo, Ontario: The Centre for International Governance Innovation, 2014. Print.
 U.N. Support Plan. Supra Note 53 at 7.
 Rodney, Walter. How Europe Underdeveloped Africa. London: Bogle-L’Ouverture Publications, 1977.
 U.N. Sustainable Development Goals. (S.D.Gs) U.N.:N.Y. (2015). https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/
 Muhabie Mekonnen Mengistu. ‘Multiplicity of African Regional Economic Communities and Overlapping Memberships: A Challenge for African Integration’ in International Journal of Economics, Finance and Management Sciences. Vol. 3, No. 5, 2015, pp. 417-425. doi: 10.11648/j.ijefm.20150305.12
 Lazarus, 2009, 1153 culled from Sandrine Maljean-Dubois, ‘Climate Change Litigation’ in Max Planck Encyclopedia of Procedural Law, 2019 supra note 38 at paragraph 3.
 Terrence Neal. ‘The Regional Governance of Genetically Modified Crops: What does the future hold for Ecowas?’ in The Harvard Africa Policy Journal. Feb. 11, 2019.
 Olutayo, Akinpelu O. et al. Regional Economic Communities: Exploring the Process of Socio-Economic Integration in Africa in ‘Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa’. Dakar, Senegal: 2015.
 U.N. S.D.Gs. supra note 89.
 Paris Agreement. Supra Note 52.
 United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in those Countries experiencing serious Drought and/or Desertification, particularly in Africa (17th June, 1994).
 Dambisa Moyo. Dead Aid:Why Aid is not working and how there is a better way for Africa. Farrar: N.Y. (2009). Pp. 29-47.
 William Easterly. The White Man’s Burden: Why the West’s efforts to aid the rest have done so much ill and so little good. Penguin Books: N.Y. (2006)
 Jeffrey D. Sachs. The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for our Time. The Penguin Press: N.Y. (2005). pp. 244 - 265
 Ghana Government. The Coordinated Program of Economic & Social Development Policies (2017-2024). Culled from the website of NDPC. https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/new-ndpc-static1/CACHES/PUBLICATIONS/2018/04/11/Coordinate+Programme-Final+(November+11,+2017)+cover.pdf
 A.U. “Agenda 2063. Supra note 51.
 3rd High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness ‘Accra Agenda for Action’ Sept. 2-4, 2008. Accra, Ghana. (2008). http://siteresources.worldbank.org/ACCRAEXT/Resources/4700790-1217425866038/AAA-4-SEPTEMBER-FINAL-16h00.pdf
 Paris Agreement. Supra note 52 at Art. 4.7.
 Ibid at Art. 7.5.
 International Convention on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. U.N: N.Y. (16 Dec. 1966).
 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. U.N.:N.Y. (23 March, 1976).
 U.N. Support Plan for the Sahel. Supra note 53 @ 16.
 Sustainable Development Brief. Supra note 1 at 4.