November 15th, 2017
The Minister for Climate Action today announced that the Government will provide additional funding to support vulnerable countries hit hardest by the impacts of climate change.
Speaking prior to his departure to the COP23 Conference in Bonn, the Minister said that the Government will now provide an additional €2.5 million to support international climate action this year.
In 2009, developed countries under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change agreed to gather $100 billion per year by 2020 from public and private sources to support developing countries. In 2015, Ireland committed to providing at least €175 million between 2016 and 2020.
The comments come on the same day the 2018 Climate Change Performance Index singled out Ireland as the worst performing country in Europe for action on climate change.
Most of the additional funding (€2m) will go to the Green Climate Fund to support developing countries in reducing emissions and adapting to the impacts of climate change. Ireland also provided €2m in 2016.
The remaining funding will go toward the Adaptation Fund of the UNFCCC and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The IPCC is responsible for assessing the scientific basis of climate change, its impact and risks and is also charged with providing policymakers with mitigation options.
The Minister also announced that the Government supports his proposal for Ireland to join the NDC Partnership. Launched at COP22 in Marrakesh last year, the Partnership is a global coalition to help countries achieve ambitious climate and development goals outlined in the Paris Agreement.
Involvement in the project will “reinforce and help to amplify Ireland’s commitment to developing countries”, the Minister said, adding that Ireland will share expertise through Irish Aid programmes.
In 2016, €52.66million was provided to address climate change in developing countries, primarily through bilateral assistance under Irish Aid programmes.
Speaking from Bonn, Deputy Director of Trócaire, Finola Finnan, welcomed the announcement and called on the Government to step up plans for a “sustained and growing contribution to long-term climate finance”.
While increasing support is an “essential part” of hitting targets under the Paris Agreement, Ms Finnan warned that emissions much come down fast or adaptation to climate change “will not be possible”.
“As Minister Naughten travels to Bonn for the UN climate negotiations he, therefore, will also need to demonstrate how Ireland will step up its action on reducing emissions, which are currently rising and far off track for meeting our targets,” Ms Finnan said.