Green Climate Fund short-changed by rich polluting countries, says Oxfam

By agency reporter
October 25, 2019

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 began in Paris on 24 October.

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 which Oxfam believes should be the target for the replenishment process in order to meet the growing needs of developing 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 Oxfam, 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.”

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.

* Oxfam International https://www.oxfam.org/en

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