Wealthier nations are failing to deliver on their climate finance promise

According to an analysis by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, or OECD, the richest countries have failed to meet their pledge of $100 billion a year to developing countries to help them meet their climate goals.

$83.3 billion in climate finance went to the poorest countries in 2020, a 4% increase from the previous year, but still below the proposed target. The UN-backed payment plan was first agreed in 2009 to help poorer countries adapt to the effects of climate change and reduce emissions.

The commitment, initially established as an annual commitment from its inception until 2020, was never fulfilled.

“We know that more needs to be done” to fill the gap, admitted OECD Secretary General Mathias Cormann.

Who pays to fight and adapt to climate change has been a key sticking point between rich and poor nations since the start of international climate negotiations 30 years ago.

Harsen Nyambe, who heads the African Union’s climate change and environment division, told The Associated Press that the continent will continue to pressure wealthier countries to ensure compliance with the $100 billion deal. per year. He added that the funds will give the continent better access to the required technology and help countries transition to green energy equitably.

But others believe that after decades of broken promises, the wealthiest countries are unlikely to start stepping up.

“They don’t have the money. They’re too committed to issues like the Ukraine crisis and that’s why they couldn’t deliver on any of their promises,” said climate research professor Godwell Nhamo. at the University of South Africa.

“Africa should move on and find other sources of funding,” he added.

A report by UK charity Oxfam in 2020 warned that the recent increase in funding came in the form of loans, not grants, with climate-related loans rising from $13.5 billion in 2015 to 24 billion in 2018. The charity said at the time that reaching the $100 billion goal this way “would be cause for concern, not celebration.” It is unclear whether the latest year-on-year increase in climate finance has come in the form of loans or grants.

In recent years, climate finance has helped finance greener energy and transport sectors for the poorest countries, as well as adaptation measures for agricultural and forestry industries that are threatened by land degradation. , according to the OECD. ___ The Associated Press’ climate and environment coverage is supported by several private foundations. Learn more about AP’s climate initiative here. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

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