COP26: Boris Johnson to offer further £1bn climate finance from UK aid budget

COP26: Boris Johnson to offer further £1bn climate finance from UK aid budget

But additional climate funding for developing nations over next five years is contingent on UK economy meeting growth outlooks

Boris Johnson is set to tentatively commit a further PS1bn from the UK overseas aid budget over the next five years towards facilitating developing nations with the impacts of climate change, as he delivers a COP2 6 opening address tomorrow geared at pressuring global leader to accelerate their environment ambitions.

Amid compositions of world leaders slated to address the UN Climate Summit in Glasgow from tomorrow afternoon, the UK Prime Minister is expected to use his speech to demand the world moves from aspiration to action to limit rising temperatures, while also upping the UK’s own climate finance pledge.

“Humanity has long since run down the clock on climate change, ” Johnson is expected to say in his speech. “It’s one minute to midnight and we need to act now. If we don’t get serious about climate change today, it will be too late for our children to do so tomorrow.”

Johnson is expected to announce that the UK will provide PS1 2.6 bn in climate finance to developing nations over 5 year between 2020 and 2025, with the money delivered through the overseas aid budget – but only if Britain’s economy germinates as is currently forecast over the coming years.

It follows the Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement last week that the UK would return to spending 0.7 per cent of GDP on international aid by 2024 -2 5 thanks to an improved outlook for the economy, having controversially cut back on that budget last year in the wake of the pandemic to ponderous evaluation from environment campaigners.

The UK had previously pledged in 2019 to deliver PS1 1.6 bn in environment finance by 2025, and Johnson’s announcement tomorrow would therefore add another PS1bn to the commitment over the period, acquiring their own economies thrives and the UK returns to its previous 0.7 per cent overseas aid threshold.

But with the added PS1bn in atmosphere finance exclusively contingent on UK economic proliferation, Tom Burke – chairman and co-founder of climate think tank E3G – warned that “the small print means that the money still may not materialise”.

“This glances much more like controlling today’s headlines than managing a climate crisis, ” Burke said.

Even so, with climate finance set to be a major bone of contention at the Summit, its legions will hope the fresh commitment can help improve trust between richer and poorer commonwealths as the crunch talks get underway proper this week in Glasgow.

It follows the bulletin yesterday that the UK’s COP2 6 co-host Italy has also promised to ramp up its environment finance providing, improving its firm commitment virtually threefold to $1.4 bn a year.

To date, nonetheless, richer societies have still failed to meet their collective obligate of providing $100 bn a year to assist prone commonwealths with preparing for and dealing with the worsening impacts of rising temperatures, much to the irritation of developing nations’ negotiating teams.

And while an action plan for developed countries to deliver on the $100 bn purpose – which has been dubbed a “totemic” figure by COP2 6 President Alok Sharma – was published by the OECD last week, it set out an expectation that the target would likely not are complied with until 2023.

In a entreat to smooth world-wide diplomatic relations and boost the chances of success in Glasgow, Johnson has therefore sought to dial up his rhetoric towards bigger economies and emitters in the run up to the Summit, which he has forewarned could aim in failure.

In the wake of the G20 Summit in Rome yesterday – which visualized commonwealths is under an obligation redoubling their efforts to limit temperature rise to 1.5 C – Johnson claimed that countries most responsible for climate change “are not yet doing their fair share of the work”.

And in his address in Glasgow tomorrow afternoon, Johnson is also expected to deliver a similar letter of necessity to world leaders attending the Summit over the next fortnight, while reiterating his common calling-card for action on “coal, “cat-o-nine-tails”, cash and trees”.

“We have to move from talk and debate and discussion to concerted, real-world action on coal, gondolas, money and trees, ” Johnson is expected to say. “Not more hopes and targets and ideals, valuable though they are, but clear commitments and concrete timetables for reform. We need to get real about climate change impacts and the world needs to know when that’s going to happen.”

Responding to the PM’s expected lecture tomorrow, E3G’s diplomacy and geopolitics contribute Alex Scott said Johnson was right to call for intensified climate action, but warned that achieving it would require a great deal of diplomatic work over the next fortnight.

“There is a deal to be done at COP, but to deliver it he needs to persuade rich countries to fully deliver on their past hopes and work together to leverage the trillions of finance needed for countries to recover better and fight climate change, ” Scott said.

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