Join the climate letter by African activists and scientists, including Vanessa Nakate, Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, Ndoni Mcunu, and Kaossara Sani, in an open call to the leaders of our continent.

Tropical Cyclone Eloise Hits Mozambique. © Jose Jeco / EPA-EFE

Tell your government to declare a climate emergency and take climate action now!

Africa is feeling the heat. Every day, more and more extreme weather events are happening across the continent, destroying lives and displacing thousands. We need our governments to declare a #ClimateEmergency.

Floods, heatwaves, droughts, wildfires and cyclones are taking place at unprecedented and unpredictable rates, leaving utter devastation in their wake. Millions across our continent have been left facing food insecurity, water shortages, disease and extreme poverty.

Nothing about this is normal or inevitable. We are in the midst of a human-made climate crisis; one that could be more catastrophic if we fail to act.

Africans may not be primarily responsible for emissions that have brought this climate crisis upon us, but we have the responsibility and the power to overcome it.

Africa’s climate is visualised as stripes that show how the continent’s average temperature has changed over the decades from 1850–2019. Each coloured stripe represents one year; warmer years are red and cooler years are blue.

The graphic was developed by Professor Ed Hawkins from the National Centre for Atmospheric Science at the University of Reading’s Department of Meteorology in the United Kingdom. Billions of pieces of data were used to create hundreds of images that cover every country in the world and which are available to download free of charge. To create a climate stripes graphic for other countries, regions and states, or for the global overview, visit: (The graphic is licensed for reproduction as part the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International, CC BY 4.0).

Take-home messages