COP28: Unprecedented Climate Finance Pledges Drive Global Collaboration
By Faridat Salifu
The United Nations climate summit, COP28, has commenced in the United Arab Emirates, witnessing an extraordinary surge in climate finance commitments within the initial five days, surpassing an impressive $83 billion.
This substantial mobilization of funds underscores the robust commitment from a diverse group of contributors to tackle the urgent issue of climate change.
The United Arab Emirates has exceeded previous pledges, committing $30 billion to a new fund dedicated to investing in climate-friendly projects globally, with a specific allocation of $5 billion for the Global South.
The World Bank has set an ambitious target to raise climate funding to 45% of its total lending, translating to an additional $9 billion annually.
The Development Bank of Latin America and the Caribbean (CAF) has pledged to invest over $2 billion annually until 2030 in Latin America to combat climate change.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has earmarked $10 billion for climate investment in the Philippines between 2024 and 2029.
Japan and France have pledged support for a plan by the African Development Bank and Inter-American Development Bank to leverage IMF Special Drawing Rights for climate and development.
UAE banks have collectively committed to mobilize an impressive 1 trillion dirhams, equivalent to around $270 billion, in green finance.
Charitable organizations, including the Bezos Earth Fund, have partnered with the World Bank’s private investment arm in a collaborative effort to generate $11 billion in investments in developing countries.
Following the establishment of a fund to assist less affluent nations in coping with the impacts of climate change, total contributions have reached a noteworthy $726 million. Several countries, including Italy with 100 million euros and the Netherlands with 15 million euros, have made contributions.
The world’s largest international fund dedicated to supporting climate action in developing countries has received substantial pledges amounting to $3.5 billion in the initial days of the event, including fresh funding from the United States.
Danish investment firm Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners has expressed its intent to raise $3 billion for a new fund focused on initiating renewable energy projects in emerging and middle-income countries.
The Arab Energy Fund, a multilateral lender with a focus on the Middle East and North Africa, has announced plans to invest up to $1 billion in the next five years, specifically in advancing decarbonization technologies.
In a commendable move, the United States has extended a loan of $568 million to the Clean Technology Fund (CTF) under the Climate Investment Funds (CIF), dedicated to supporting low-carbon technology development in emerging and developing economies.
The UAE has taken a significant step forward with a contribution of $100 million to support the newly established World Bank methane trust fund, aimed at reducing flaring and emissions of the potent greenhouse gas.
Additionally, nearly a dozen philanthropic entities have pledged to invest $450 million over the next three years to assist countries in launching national initiatives to address methane emissions.
Recognizing the pressing need to address health challenges exacerbated by climate change, the UAE, in partnership with several charitable organizations, has committed $777 million to combat neglected tropical diseases anticipated to worsen with rising temperatures.
In a show of solidarity, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the UAE have jointly pledged $200 million to bolster smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, strengthening their resilience and capacity to adapt to climate change impacts.
Brazil’s national development bank has launched a $205 million effort to restore 60,000 square km (23,160 square miles) of degraded or destroyed woodland in the Amazon by 2030, marking a significant stride in preserving vital ecosystems.
The World Bank has announced an expansion of the Climate Resilient Debt Clauses to cover all existing World Bank loans for the most vulnerable countries, pausing debt repayments in the event of natural disasters, thus bolstering the countries’ resilience.
Countries such as the UAE, Britain, Germany, and the United States have collectively pledged just over $300 million to establish a new climate disaster fund, underscoring the global commitment to disaster mitigation and recovery.