Green Climate Fund short-changed by rich polluting countries
Rich polluting countries such as Australia, Canada, the Netherlands and the US are short-changing poor countries by billions of dollars that they need to cut emissions and adapt to the climate crisis, says Oxfam. The two-day pledging conference to the Green Climate Fund begins in Paris today.
To date, developed countries have pledged $7.5 billion to the Fund to cover the next four-year spending period. This is just half of the $15 billion that Oxfam believes should be the target for the replenishment process in order to meet the growing needs of developed countries, with more than 300 potential project proposals in the fund’s pipeline.
• Canada, Austria, and
the Netherlands have contributed a third of what Oxfam
estimates to be their fair share.
• Australia has indicated that it will join the US and refuse to provide new funds in this round.
• Countries such as Japan, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Finland, Portugal, and New Zealand have yet to announce their contribution.
By comparison, Germany, UK, France, Norway and Sweden have doubled their contributions since the first funding round in 2014/15.
Armelle Le Comte, Climate and Energy Advocacy Manager for the Oxfam confederation said:
“The Green Climate Fund is a lifeline for poor countries that need help to cut emissions and adapt to an increasingly erratic and extreme climate. We urge all rich countries to contribute their fair share - their support could be the difference between life and death for poor communities that are struggling to survive on the climate front line.
“Global investments in oil, gas and coal supply and power generation topped US$933 billion in 2018 – we are spending 100 times more on fossil fuels than governments appear to be willing to put into the world’s flagship climate fund,” added Le Comte.
Oxfam New Zealand Advocacy and Campaigns Director Dr Joanna Spratt said:
“This Fund supports Pacific states and other developing countries to adapt and mitigate to a problem they did not cause, but bear the full force of. An ambitious and successful replenishment is essential for the GCF to continue its work as the largest funder of climate finance globally.
“Oxfam New Zealand is calling for our government to contribute at least US$30 million to the four-year replenishment. This falls short of what Oxfam has calculated as New Zealand’s fair share, at US$50-90 million, but is a long way above the US$2.6 million we gave last time,” Spratt said.
The Green Climate Fund was established in 2010 and will be the main multilateral channel through which rich countries can support poor countries to tackle the climate crisis. Over the past four years, more than 110 projects in developing countries have been allocated financial support from the fund for projects such as the expansion of solar power in Nigeria and Mali, the restoration of forests in Honduras, and the creation of more resilient agriculture systems in Bhutan and Belize.