Africa calls for $500 billion fund

2011-12-01 00:00

IT was a case of follow the money at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP17) in Durban as the Green Climate Fund (GCF) came under the spotlight yesterday.

The African Group presented its opening negotiating position at COP17 and the fund was a central issue.

Spokesperson Seyni Nafo said the African Group would propose the amount for the fund be derived from 1,5% of developed countries’ GNPs, which he calculated would provide the $500 billion (R4,08 trillion) to $600 billion required to finance Africa’s emissions reduction efforts and adaptation to climate change.

This is five to six times more than the $100 billion by 2020 agreed to at COP16 in Cancun, Mexico, for the GCF.

The fund — which observers believe will be formally established at the Durban summit — is aimed at helping poor countries finance emission reductions and adaptation.

“If the conference delays a decision on the fund it will delay the identification of sources of funding and accessing available finance,” said the head of the South African delegation, Edna Molewa, Water and Environmental Affairs Minister. This came after the design for the Green Climate Fund was presented at COP17 yesterday.

Molewa said the fund at present is a “shell”. The funds themselves are not under discussion, but rather the mechanism that would see them sourced and rolled out.

The setting up of the GCF, which was agreed to at COP16 in Cancun, sees developed countries contributing $100 billion to assist developing countries most affected by climate change brought about by the greenhouse gas emissions of the developed countries.

The fund would assist developing countries to introduce mitigation and adaptation technologies.

“We are still confident we are on track with the fund,” Molewa said in response to a question at a press conference suggesting that talks around the fund are breaking down.

Other delegations did not engage on the subject of the amount.

European Union spokesperson Tomasz Chruszcow said making the fund operational is a major EU priority.

“It will play a key role in mitigation, adaptation and technology transfer,” he said, adding it is inevitably a compromise but that it is a good one.

“There should be agreement on the draft and that agreement will attract funding. It would be unproductive to have further discussions,” he said.

Chruszcow said COP17 should come up with a decision on the fund and a board be created to start work in 2012.

Nafo said the African Group wants the legal architecture of the GCF to ensure that developing countries have direct access to it.

He said the funding should come directly to governments and the private sector.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.