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Climate Funds Bypass Hardest Hit, New Global Climate Fund Needed - Oxfam Report


The poorest people who need the most help to adapt to a changing
climate are largely being bypassed by the small amount of climate funds
now being disbursed, says a new Oxfam report published today at the UN
climate change talks in Tianjin, China.

The report shows that negotiators must create a Global Climate Fund
that vulnerable populations in poor countries can access so that they
are not left behind in proposed climate solutions.

Oxfam's report, "Righting Two Wrongs: Making a New Global Climate Fund Work for Poor People," brings together evidence, which shows that in recent years:

  • Less than a tenth of climate funds disbursed to date are estimated
    to have been for adaptation to help poor people in developing countries
    who are bearing the brunt of climate impacts.1
  • The world's 49 poorest countries have received about one-eighth -
    $450 million out of $3.5 billion - of funding from the Global
    Environment Facility.2
  • Only $220 million has been donated to fund adaptation plans (known
    as NAPAs) in the Least Developed Countries - just one tenth of the $2
    billion estimated total plan costs.3

"Vulnerable populations in poor countries have been completely shut out the process
so it's no surprise that they are being overlooked when the checks are
written," said Kelly Dent, Senior Climate Change Advisor for Oxfam.
"Negotiators need to learn from past mistakes and set up a new Global
Climate Fund that is fairly governed, accountable and accessible to the
groups, including women, who are on the front lines of climate change."

Oxfam is calling for a new Global Climate Fund to be set up at the UN climate summit in Cancun
in December to govern public funds pledged by developed nations under
the Copenhagen Accord. This fund must help address the failure to get
adequate climate investments to poor people who bear the brunt of
climate change's impacts. Progress on this fund is a key item for
discussion in Tianjin and one of the essential ingredients for progress
towards a binding climate deal.

"This is a race against time
but we are running on a treadmill," said Dent. "Setting up a Global
Climate Fund that gives a voice and support to those facing the harshest
climate impacts is one of the things that can get the talks moving this

"For many people around the world, this has been a year
from sheer hell. We've seen floods, droughts, fires, storms and other
extreme weather events that will only get worse as climate change
intensifies. Some of the poorest people in the world have seen their
crops wiped out and livelihoods destroyed - but we still haven't caught
on to their needs," said Dent. "Will we sow the seeds of resilience now
or pay the price of failure later?"

"Righting Two Wrongs" calls
for a new Global Climate Fund and broader finance system that is seen as
legitimate by both developed and developing countries and that is
representative, equitable, accountable, accessible, transparent and
efficient. Poor governments must be able to directly access the fund and
at least half of the money should be spent helping poor and vulnerable
people adapt to a changing climate. In addition, a number of
accountability measures are recommended, including ensuring that poor
countries and women have an equal say in how the fund is managed and
spent and that the fund is transparent as to where the money is going.

devil is in the detail but this is no small decision," said Dent. "We
need to see some clear options on the climate fund coming out of Tianjin
to get to a decision in Cancun. The funds needed are on the same order
of magnitude as current annual aid figures of around $120 billion a
year. Getting it right is literally a question of life and death."

Read more

Download the report: Righting two wrongs: Making a new Global Climate Fund work for poor people (pdf, 434kb)

Sow the Seed: how you can make a difference in three simple steps

Oxfam's Climate Change Campaign

Oxfam International is a global movement of people who are fighting inequality to end poverty and injustice. We are working across regions in about 70 countries, with thousands of partners, and allies, supporting communities to build better lives for themselves, grow resilience and protect lives and livelihoods also in times of crisis.