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UN’s €100 Billion Climate Fund Faces Cash Problems

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EurActiv

Developed countries have committed €100 billion to the Green Climate Fund. As of today, the Fund only has a few million euros to ensure its functioning, mainly because of a lack of consensus between developed countries and their southern counterparts.

 

The board of the Green Climate Fund meets in Paris this week to help developing countries adapt to climate change and reduce emissions.

Will the Green Climate Fund remain an empty shell? As the fifth board meeting of the Green Fund is being held in the Ministry of Finance this week (8-10 October), the operational implementation of the fund, announced three years ago, has struggled to materialise.

The multilateral fund established by the UN agreements in Copenhagen and Cancún aims to centralise finance for adaptation to climate change and reduce carbon dioxide emissions in developing countries. Developed countries have committed €100 billion by 2020 to this ambitious project, a significant part of which should transit through the new fund.

During this week’s meeting, the twenty-four members of the Green Fund board, divided equally between developing countries and developed countries, will focus on the timing and implementation of the fund.

“The purpose of the meeting is to state that the Green Fund is ready to receive funding from various donor countries even if it is not yet operational for distribution to developing countries,” says Alix Mazounie from Climate Action Network, a green campaign group.

North-South disagreements

Today, the Green Fund only has a few million euros to ensure its functioning, mainly because of a lack of consensus between developed countries and their southern counterparts.

For rich countries, the objective is to involve the private sector in helping to meet their commitments, while developing countries expect the effort to come primarily from public funds.

Another bone of contention is the involvement of emerging powers such as China and India, whose financial support to the fund remains an open question.

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see also: Gordon Brown Pitches $100 Billion Climate Finance Plan

The world is down to about 160 days until the international climate talks in Copenhagen begin. On the table are short-term and long-term targets for emissions reductions in both the developed world and in developing countries, forest protection, and financing for climate change mitigation and adaptation. To address the financing problem, the UK’s Prime Minister Gordon Brown has put forward a proposal for a $100 billion dollar fund…