Environment ministers drop climate funding hot potato03 March 2009
by eub2 -- last modified 03 March 2009
EU environment ministers meeting today in Brussels failed to make concrete financial commitments to support developing country action against climate change. This issue will next be discussed by finance ministers (on 10 March) and then by EU leaders at the March summit.
The EU recognises that the world's poorer nations will need capital to produce clean energy and improve efficiency, to protect forests, and to adapt to the already unavoidable climate impacts, mainly caused by greenhouse gas emissions in the industrialised world.
"Environment ministers have ducked and passed the climate funding hot potato to finance ministers. While billions of taxpayers' money is being used to prop up failed banks and carmakers, not one eurocent is being pledged to help the developing world tackle a problem that Europeans helped create," said Joris den Blanken, Greenpeace EU climate and energy policy director.
European environment ministers put the total cost of tackling climate change at EUR 175 billion annually until 2020. In Greenpeace's view, this figure is irrelevant, as it refers to the climate efforts of all nations and includes both public and private funding sources.
Ministers failed to reach conclusions on proposals for new international financial mechanisms under the next global climate agreement. Greenpeace calls on EU leaders to support a market-linked scheme where countries are asked to pay for part of their emissions.
"The EU must contribute its fair share to poorer countries. The clock is ticking, global climate talks in Copenhagen are less than 300 days away and we still have little more than words on the table," said den Blanken.
Greenpeace calls on EU finance ministers and EU leaders meeting on 19 and 20 March to put forward quantifiable public funding for developing countries. Greenpeace calls on industrialised countries to make annual contributions by 2020 of at least EUR 40 billion for clean energy investments, at least EUR 30 billion for forest protection and at least EUR 40 billion to help developing countries deal with the effects of climate change. The EU should contribute about a third of these figures (about EUR 35 billion).
Greenpeace European Unit is based in Brussels, where we monitor and analyse the work of the institutions of the European Union (EU), expose deficient EU policies and laws, and challenge decision-makers to implement progressive solutions.
Greenpeace European Unit