Press release

UK pledges to help hardest hit by climate change

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The UK has committed up to £720 million to the Green Climate Fund, joining other major economies to help developing countries adapt to climate change and go low-carbon.

The UK has committed up to £720 million to the Green Climate Fund, joining other major economies to help developing countries adapt to climate change and go low-carbon.

The fund will target developing countries, including the most vulnerable, to help them adapt to the adverse effects of climate change and limit or reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

After the UK’s contribution, the climate fund now stands at around $9bn with 13 countries already pledging, including $3 bn from the US, $1.5bn from Japan, $1bn from Germany, and $1bn from France.

The UK money comes from existing funds earmarked for international climate work under the UK’s commitment for 0.7% of gross national income to overseas development assistance.

These pledges should help add momentum to efforts to secure a global deal at the UNFCCC negotiations in Lima and in Paris next year.

Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey said:

“The poorest and most vulnerable on the planet are already suffering the effects of climate change and it’s our moral duty to act.

“From protecting low-lying islands and coastal settlements from the impact of rising sea levels to helping farmers struggling with lower crop yields caused by the weather effects of climate change – British aid can save lives.

“Along with the UK, other major economies such as the US, Japan, Germany and France have made substantial pledges and I urge other countries to be equally ambitious.”

The UK has a seat on the fund’s governing board whose 24 members, drawn equally from developing and developed countries, will decide on and supervise the fund’s spending.

The World Bank will manage the fund’s financial assets as interim trustee, subject to a review three years after the fund starts in 2015.

Notes for editors

  • The UK is committing to fund 12 per cent of the GCF up to a maximum of £720m
  • The UK pledge is based on the assumption the Board concludes the work it has already commissioned to ensure key operational elements of the Fund are in place, so it can start supporting projects as quickly as possible. These include accrediting implementing entities, agreeing the investment criteria, and the Private Sector Facility Business Plan.
  • Background of the GCF can be found on the GCF website in summary:
  • The Fund will contribute to the achievement of the ultimate objective of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). In the context of sustainable development, the Fund will promote the paradigm shift towards low emission and climate-resilient development pathways by providing support to developing countries to limit or reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and to adapt to the impacts of climate change, taking into account the needs of those developing countries particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change.
  • The fund aiming to spend 50% on mitigation, and 50% on adaptation (with 50% of the adaption fund going to the most vulnerable)
  • The Fund aims to start programming in 2015.