Countries Pledge $9.8B for Global Climate Fund to Help Poor
PARIS — Rich countries have pledged $9.8 billion to help poor nations tackle climate change, the fund coordinating support said Friday, as environmental campaigners slammed the United States for refusing to contribute.
Yannick Glemarec, the executive director of the Green Climate Fund, said 27 countries announced contributions by the end of a two-day conference in Paris.
The United States did not make any pledge, as U.S. President Donald Trump has decided to stop paying into the fund.
The Climate Action Network, made up of more than 1,300 NGOs, castigated both the U.S. and Australia for refusing to pitch in.
They “have turned their backs on the world’s poorest and have once again isolated themselves in global efforts to respond to the climate emergency,” the network said in a statement. It also named Canada, the Netherlands, Portugal, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Austria and Belgium as countries that “failed to deliver their fair share” and called on them to make up the shortfall.
Oxfam International’s Armelle Le Comte called the failure of the United States and Australia to provide funding “appalling.”
But the Green Climate Fund’s Glemarec put an optimistic spin on the shortfalls.
“We will most likely be able to find additional resources” before the United Nations’ annual climate conference, which will be held in December in Santiago, Chile, Glemarec said.
Glemarec said the extra money will increase the fund’s capacity from about $1.4 billion per year now to $2.4 billion per year in the period from 2020 to 2024.
French finance minister Bruno Le Maire, speaking earlier Friday, praised “a great success” that he attributed largely to European countries, noting that almost half of the amount is being provided by France, Germany and Britain alone.
“Many countries will double their contributions,” Le Maire said.
The South Korea-based fund, which provides money to help developing countries reduce their emissions and cope with the impacts of climate change, says it has nearly exhausted some $7 billion received following an initial funding round five years ago.
Former President Barack Obama pledged $3 billion toward the fund, but Trump moved to withhold $2 billion after taking office.Wait, before you go…
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