Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Developing countries stepping up action against climate change

ReliefWeb, from a World Bank press release: Despite the global financial crisis and the resulting economic downturn, the past year has witnessed unprecedented demand from developing countries for World Bank Group support in their efforts to address development and climate change as interlinked challenges, according to a new report. Released today, the Progress Report on the Strategic Framework for Development and Climate Change documents the Bank Group's growing response to these demands.

Developing countries are asking for a broad range of assistance, including help with climate resilient development, adaptation mechanisms, clean technology, and energy efficiency and renewable energy financing. The Latin America and Caribbean Region alone developed an IBRD (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development) portfolio of more than 180 country-led activities with climate change adaptation and mitigation co-benefits totaling more than US$7.3 billion. Making development climate resilient has emerged as a major theme in supporting poverty reduction and economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa. From addressing drought risk in Ethiopia (second phase US$175 million) to watershed management in Kenya and Malawi (US$75.5 million), Africa is rapidly increasing its efforts to grapple with development challenges in a changing climate.

"Climate change is increasing the development challenge, most markedly in the poorest countries," said Katherine Sierra, Vice President for Sustainable Development at the World Bank. "From disaster risk reduction programs integrating climate adaptation to mobilizing almost US$1 billion for the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience, we have significantly increased the ability of the Bank Group working with other Multilateral Development Banks, the UN, bilateral agencies, civil society, and private sector partners to respond to the climate change priorities of many of the most vulnerable developing countries."

To meet the surging demand, the Bank Group has expanded its support to climate-resilient and low carbon investments by using and leveraging a suite of financing instruments, mobilizing and facilitating access to new additional resources, packaging "core" financial products with specialized climate resources, pioneering and broadening the reach of carbon markets, and complementing finance with technical assistance and policy advice....

Sundari trees in the Sundarbans, Bangladesh, shot by Monster eagle, Wikimedia Commons, nder the Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 License

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