World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Green Industrial Policies Key For Climate Adaptation In Developing World

Green industrial policies will be critical for developing countries to adapt to climate change, UN trade and development body UNCTAD said in a report published on Thursday.

The agency has called for a “transformative approach” that will allow these nations to address current and future climate threats while also driving growth and job creation.

The ‘eco-development trap’

UNCTAD said many developing countries are caught in an “eco-development trap” as vulnerability to economic and climate shocks are compounding each other, resulting in permanent disruption, economic uncertainty and slow productivity growth.

“The report demonstrates that sufficient action to adapt to the climate challenge will require a transformed approach that is proactive and strategic rather than simply retroactive,” said Rebeca Grynspan, the UNCTAD Secretary-General.

“But developing country governments need adequate policy and fiscal space to mobilize large-scale public investment to face future climate threats, while ensuring these investments complement development goals.”

The study is the second part to UNCTAD’s annual Trade and Development Report, which was released in September.

Adaptation costs rising

Although climate adaptation is viewed as a kind of “poor cousin” to mitigation, the UN agency said, this is both shortsighted and costly for developing countries, where climate shocks have damaged growth prospects and forced governments to reallocate scarce resources.

Adaptation costs for developing countries doubled over the past decade due to inaction, and are set to rise further as temperatures increase, reaching $300 billion in 2030 and $500 billion in 2050.

Although countries have been advised to strengthen climate resilience by improving data gathering and risk assessment techniques, the report argues that “adaptation is less a matter of risk management and more one of development planning”, with the state playing a key role.

Sustainable and meaningful impact

“Climate adaptation and development are inextricably connected and policy efforts to tackle adaptation must acknowledge this, in order to have a sustainable and meaningful impact,” said Richard Kozul-Wright, director of UNCTAD’s globalization and development strategies division, and lead author of the report.

He suggested that the only lasting solution, therefore, “is to establish more resilient economies through a process of structural transformation and reduce the dependence of developing countries on a small number of climate-sensitive activities.”

The report proposes that development can be “retrofitted” to implement green industrial policies which take local economic circumstances into consideration.

Renewable energy production, for example, can operate at a low scale, thus opening business opportunities for small firms and rural areas.

This would help to diversity economic production overall, reduce dependency on prime commodities, and even enlarge the tax base, helping create new domestic sources of development finance.

To escape the eco-development trap, the report recommends that climate adaptation in developing countries should include key features such as “abandoning austerity as the default policy framework”, large-scale public investment in renewable energy and green technologies, and adopting a green agricultural policy that protects small producers and the environment.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


UN: COVID Contributed To 69,000 Malaria Deaths WHO Finds, Though ‘Doomsday Scenario’ Averted
Disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in considerable increases in malaria cases and deaths between 2019 and 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday... More>>

Save The Children: World Leaders Urged To Halt Escalating Hunger Crisis

A group of 120 non-governmental organisations has joined forces in an open letter calling on world leaders to do more to halt a devastating global hunger crisis as new analysis shows the number of people likely to be in need of humanitarian aid in 2022 could rise by 17%...More>>

WMO: Another La Niña Impacts Temperatures And Precipitation – But Not Climate Change
La Niña has developed for the second consecutive year and is expected to last into early 2022, influencing temperatures and precipitation. Despite the cooling influence of this naturally occurring climate phenomenon, temperatures in many parts of the world are expected to be above average because of the accumulated heat trapped in the atmosphere...

Cook Islands: First COVID Case "historical"

The 10 year old child who provided two ‘weak positive’ covid test results after arriving in Rarotonga last Thursday, has returned a negative result in his latest test. That means he’s not infectious and this is an historical case... More>>

Oxfam: Failure To Vaccinate The World Created Perfect Breeding Ground For Omicron, Say Campaigners

Campaigners from the People’s Vaccine Alliance say the refusal of pharmaceutical companies to openly share their vaccine science and technology and the lack of action from rich countries to ensure access to vaccines globally have created the perfect breeding ground for new variants such as Omicron... More>>

World Food Programme: Millions More In Need Of Food Assistance As A Direct Result Of Conflict In Northern Ethiopia

The number of people in need of humanitarian food assistance across northern Ethiopia has grown to an estimated 9.4 million as a direct result of ongoing conflict, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced today... More>>