Press release

UK publishes latest results in tackling global climate change

2018 International Climate Finance results show the impact of UK investments in tackling climate change and protecting vulnerable people.

Buses drive through a flooded street in Dakar, Senegal. Picture: BRACED
Buses drive through a flooded street in Dakar, Senegal. Picture: BRACED

The 2018 International Climate Finance (ICF) results, published today, illustrate the impact of UK investments in tackling climate change and protecting vulnerable people.

ICF supports international poverty eradication now and in the future by supporting investments that have lower carbon emissions such as clean energy, and by helping developing countries build resilience to the impacts of climate change.

The UK has committed to spend at least £5.8 billion on this effort between 2016 and 2021, through DFID, BEIS and Defra. Today, the government can announce the latest set of results that show this work has:

  • Supported 47 million people to cope with the effects of climate change – equivalent to the population of Spain
  • Provided 17 million people with improved access to clean energy
  • Reduced or avoided 10.4 million tonnes of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (tCO2e) – approximately equivalent to the yearly emissions of 2.5 million cars
  • Installed 590 MW of clean energy capacity
  • Mobilised £3.3 billion public and £910 million private finance for climate change purposes in developing countries.

Minister of State for International Development, Harriett Baldwin said:

Today’s results show further progress in tackling climate change for the people around the world who are affected most by the devastating impact on their communities and livelihoods.

Extreme climates cause devastating drought and hunger, and these results reflect the immense impact UK aid is having in supporting some of the world’s poorest and most fragile countries. At the same time, we are helping to make the world safer and cleaner which benefits us all here in the UK.

The Minister for Energy and Clean Growth, Claire Perry said:

The UK is hugely proud of our track record as innovators and pioneers in International Climate Finance. The UK has already slashed its own emissions by over 40% since 1990 whilst growing our economy ahead of the G7 - creating jobs and prosperity through investment in new clean tech sectors - and we want to share this learning through our overseas development spending. Today’s results show the immense impact that our international climate finance is having on people’s lives in developing countries and beyond, proving that well directed finance can transform lives, cut carbon and create new global markets for green goods and services.

Environment Minister, Thérèse Coffey said:

The UK continues to demonstrate our leadership in dealing with global environmental issues. Climate change is a cross-cutting issue with inextricable links between forests, climate, people and ecosystem services.

These results demonstrate the importance of international climate finance and the impacts that we can have worldwide when we deliver this finance effectively. The UK will continue to support countries to protect the world’s most biodiverse forests and contribute to development that is sustainable.

ICF programmes

One of the programmes to benefit from ICF investment is Building Resilience and Adaptation to Climate Extremes and Disasters (BRACED)

BRACED builds resilience and adaptation to climate extremes and disasters in 13 countries across the Sahel, East Africa and South and Southeast Asia. BRACED has already helped over 5 million people and aims to assist up to 10 million people to cope with - and become more resilient to - extreme weather events and climate extremes.

One of BRACED’s programmes creates livestock corridors in Africa’s Sahel region to provide benefits for nomadic herders such as animal clinics and solar powered wells where vast droughts and arid land threaten livestock and drive conflict.

Future Climate For Africa (FCFA) research is helping scientists understand the scale and impact of climate change in Africa. For example, in Rwanda, FCFA worked with farmers to protect their most valuable crop, coffee, from the increased temperatures caused by climate change. Farmers were shown how to grow crops such as bananas in the same area as their coffee crops, providing shade for the coffee fruit against the harsh temperatures. The banana plants also provide an extra source of income, access to extra food, and fertiliser for the soil.

Other work includes changing the way clean energy markets operate, with a focus on improving health, safety and economic opportunities. For example, UK aid has provided clean and reliable energy to health clinics helping to save lives in some of the poorest parts of the world. This provides clean, reliable energy to keep medicines from spoiling, and provides lighting and electricity 24/7.

Phoebe, an Assistant Nurse in charge of a health centre in Uganda, supported by UK aid said:

For a long time, many women didn’t come here. We didn’t have any electricity. Mothers would die while giving birth at night. All of us were afraid. The electricity has really helped us. We’re now able to carry out all main operations. The community knows about the electricity and they are coming here now. The power provides access anytime.

Notes to editors

The UK has committed to spend at least £5.8 billion of International Climate Finance (ICF) between 2016 and 2021. This builds on the £3.87bn that the UK spent on climate activities between 2011 and 2015. UK ICF supports a portfolio of investments managed by the Department for International Development, Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

While quality assuring data used for this publication, the UK government identified an error in how expected results were calculated which has resulted in a downward revision in the expected results for the ‘Number of people with improved access to clean energy’ from 77 million to 36 million people.

Achieved results have been presented as those cumulatively achieved up to 2017/18. Due to time lags in confirming results achieved, these results may not fully represent those actually delivered by ICF programmes by the time of reporting.

Where a programme receives funding from other donors or sources, the results attributable to the UK’s ICF are calculated as a percentage share of the overall results achieved. The results percentage share is equal to the percentage share of the donor funding that HMG has provided.

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Published 6 July 2018