Egypt will host the COP27 United Nations Climate Change Conference from 6-18 November 2022, in which world leaders, UN high-level officials and thousands of environmental activists from all over the world will meet.
In this regard, the Global Rights Watch (GRW) calls on developed nations to take urgent measures to help climate-vulnerable developing countries better cope with the impacts of climate change.
Twelve years ago, at a United Nations climate summit in Copenhagen, rich nations made a significant pledge. They promised to channel US$100 billion a year to less wealthy nations by 2020, to help them adapt to climate change and mitigate further rises in temperature.
That promise was broken. Figures for 2020 are not yet in, and those who negotiated the pledge don’t agree on accounting methods, but a report last year for the UN1 concluded that “the only realistic scenarios” showed the $100-billion target was out of reach. “We are not there yet,” conceded UN secretary-general António Guterres.
Developing Countries Need More Financial Aid
While global leadership on climate change will require multi-faceted policy solutions, there is consensus that extreme weather and disruption from drought, flooding, and conflicts over natural resources disproportionately affect the developing world, particularly the poor and most vulnerable including women and children. With destruction from torrential storms like Hurricane Dorian, these disruptions in the developing world impact America’s long-term security and economic interests, driving mass displacement and threatening progress on preventing conflict, combating hunger, and fighting global poverty.
These countries are asking rich countries to fulfill their pledge of $100 billion a year to help them adapt to climate change. They also required recognition of the damage and losses suffered, such as the effects of sea-level rise or frequent flooding.
In a statement ahead of last year’s climate summit, the group of the least developed countries said that “raising the bar on global ambition and increasing financial allocations to fight climate change is essential to our survival.”
The obligation of advanced industrialized countries to climate finance was not only “voluntary participation” based on their technological and economic strength in exchange for the poverty of developing countries, but also came from the point of view of fairness in taking responsibility in the first place, with 10 developed countries contributing to the export of more than two-thirds of gas emissions by 68%, led by China, the United States of America and the European Union, compared to only 3% of emissions from 100 other countries. On the other hand, even if the promise of $100 billion a year is kept, it may not be enough, and according to the United Nations Environment Programme, the annual cost of climate change adaptation measures in developing countries could reach $300 billion by 2030.
Akihiko Nishio, vice president of the World Bank for Development Finance, says climate change will throw an additional 130 million people into poverty over the next ten years at most, all of them poor and underdeveloped countries, unfortunately. Nishio adds that the climate change crisis is an unfair crisis despite its universality, although the poorest people contribute the least to climate change and gas emissions compared to the people of those rich and industrialized countries, they will pay the highest price, all of which because of the corruption of its rulers and governments, as well as the lack of any official interest in the issue of climate change.
Undermined trust ahead of crucial summit talks
Details of the World Bank’s climate finance flows to developing countries are being poorly disclosed and may be hiding discrepancies and allowing for dubious claims, according to a new report by Oxfam.
In a new report “Unaccountable Accounting” today, Oxfam audited the World Bank’s reported $17.2 billion climate finance FY2020 portfolio to discover it could be off by as much as $7 billion. The Bank is the largest multilateral provider of climate finance, accounting for 56 percent of the total flow from all multilateral development banks combined.
The issue of climate finance remains a big sticking point at the UNFCCC climate talks. Developing countries need more confidence in donors’ promises about the amount and types of climate finance that is reaching them in order for the talks to be successful.