London: Developed countries made almost no progress toward their goal of providing $100 billion a year to help poor countries tackle climate change, figures from the OECD showed on Friday.
The data threaten to undermine crunch United Nations climate talks that start in Glasgow, Scotland, in just weeks. Developing nations say the funding — which has never hit its annual target — is key for them to pledge deeper emissions cuts that would help achieve the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius compared with pre-industrial levels.
“There is no excuse: delivering on the $100 billion goal is a matter of trust,” Alok Sharma, COP26 president, said in response to the figures. “We have seen little progress and the OECD report shows clearly how much further there is to go.”
Total climate finance provided and mobilized by rich countries for developing nations was $79.6 billion in 2019, an increase of just 2% from 2018, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation & Development said. It would require a more than $20 billion annual jump to meet the funding goal for 2020 alone. The rate of annual increases has only slowed over the past few years.
The U.S. and U.K. are among developed nations working to ensure that COP26 is a success, but the financing shortfall could turn out to be hurdle. American climate envoy John Kerry has been criss-crossing the globe, including China and Japan, in recent weeks, seeking more measures for cutting emissions. He assured India help in mobilizing funds to step up its efforts.
In 2009, developed countries promised to mobilize $100 billion a year by 2020 in climate finance, and that goal was reiterated again in 2015 as part of the Paris accord. But that target has been missed, in part because former U.S. President Donald Trump pulled the world’s richest polluter out of the deal.
As a result, his successor Joe Biden is under pressure to find more cash, while more than 70 countries, including China and India, have failed to come up with more ambitious emissions targets for 2030.- Bloomberg