Spain offers €45 million to the UN climate change Adaptation Fund

The United Nations’ Adaptation Fund has announced today that Spain is offering €45 million ($60 million) for short-term climate change adaptation needs in developing countries. This is one third of Spain’s annual contribution to the pledge made by rich countries at the Copenhagen climate summit last year to provide $30 billion for immediate adaptation needs in poor countries over the next three years.

José Antonio Hernández de Toro, Oxfam International’s climate change expert, said:
“Spain's contribution is a welcome vote of confidence that responds to long-standing calls from developing countries. Many poor nations believe the best way to get cash to adapt to the devastating effects of climate change is through the UN Adaptation Fund  – rather than through other channels such as the World Bank - as it allows them to have direct access to the money.”

“Rich countries must follow the example of the Spanish government and channel cash for immediate adaptation needs through the UN Adaptation Fund. That’s the best way to ensure developing country ownership over adaptation planning, and will help regain much needed trust in the UN climate talks.”

Money for climate action in poor countries must come on top of rich countries’ commitment to provide 0.7% of their national income as overseas aid. Extra resources are needed – they cannot be diverted from schools and hospitals.” 

"We expect all governments to guarantee that longer-term climate financing will be additional to their overseas aid commitments. With such an announcement, as current holder of the rotating EU Presidency, Spain could demonstrate that the EU is serious about increasing financial support which rises to the challenge of growing climate impacts in poor countries.”

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Read the report: Climate Change Adaptation

Oxfam Internatinoal Climate Change Campaign

 

Notes to editors

  • As part of the Copenhagen Accord, signed in Copenhagen in December, rich countries pledged $30billion for 2010-2012. The amount the EU has pledged to make available is €7.2 billion (€2.4 billion every year), with Spain’s contribution being €375 million (€125 million annually).
     
  • Link to the press release by the UN Adaptation Fund:  “Spain Contributes 45 Million Euros to the Adaptation Fund”
     
  • The Adaptation Fund , established under the Kyoto Protocol, is set to become fully operational for the first time in 2010, with the purpose to finance concrete adaptation projects and programmes in developing countries. It’s unique in that it allows developing countries to access funds directly, rather than through international 'implementing agencies', which have greatly reduced efficiency and limited ownership of resources. It is governed by a Board with majority representation from developing countries.
    Until now, the Adaptation Fund was financed exclusively by a 2% levy on Certified Emission Reduction (CERs) -- the credits issued for projects under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). Depending on the carbon price of CDM credits, this is expected to generate up to $300 million per year by 2012.
     
  • Examples of adaptation projects:
    • To cope with increased flooding: upgrading national flood early warning systems and raising community awareness; building new homes and schools on raised foundations; building high platforms for emergency flood shelter; integrating flood risks into governmental planning and budget processes; creating a community-based action plan for responding to floods.
       
    • To cope with lower, more erratic rainfall: upgrading national meteorological systems and medium-term forecasts; researching, testing and growing drought-tolerant crop varieties; installing efficient, low-cost irrigation systems; installing rain-water harvesting systems; spreading water-conserving farming practices.
       
    • To cope with more severe hurricanes: upgrading hurricane early warning systems and community awareness; planting a mangrove ‘bio-shield’ along the coast to diffuse storm waves; changing building regulations to reinforce new infrastructure.

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