U.S. Critics Ignore Security Interests on Green Climate Fund

U.S. Critics Ignore Security Interests on Green Climate Fund
U.S. President Barack Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and British Prime Minister David Cameron at the G-7, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, June 7, 2015. (AP photo by Carolyn Kaster).

This month represented another stepping stone in the long diplomatic march toward a prospective international climate change agreement in Paris in December. In the Bavarian Alps on June 7-8, the G-7 countries agreed on a communiqué reiterating their support for the goal of limiting climate change to below 2 degrees Celsius—compared to pre-industrial baseline levels—and pledging complete decarbonization of the global economy by 2100.

The G-7 countries also restated their commitment to a promise that they have been making repeatedly since the Copenhagen climate accord talks in December 2009. Developed nations pledged billions of dollars a year in financial assistance to help developing countries jumpstart carbon emissions cuts to mitigate climate change and implement projects to adapt and prepare for its effects. This aid is essential for developing nations, whose resources are focused on critical poverty alleviation goals, to grow their economies sustainably. Many developing nations have tied the strength of their emissions reductions pledges to this funding. After a long period of inactivity, the instrument for channeling that financial commitment, the Green Climate Fund (GCF), backed by $10.2 billion in pledges, is ready to start operations, pending the approval of specific projects.

Unfortunately, the fund has come under attack in the United States by conservatives in Congress, who have launched a wider campaign against many of the Obama administration’s climate change priorities, including a climate agreement in Paris. Senators and representatives have spoken dismissively of the fund in the past. Sen. James Inhofe—the Republican chair of the Senate’s Environment and Public Works Committee who threw a snowball on the Senate floor last winter to dispute the existence of climate change—called it a “United Nations slush fund.” It is, in fact, part of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), but run by an independent board.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article as well as three free articles per month. You'll also receive our free email newsletter to stay up to date on all our coverage:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having your own personal researcher and analyst for news and events around the globe. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of 15,000+ articles
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday
  • Weekly in-depth reports on important issues and countries
  • Daily links to must-read news, analysis, and opinion from top sources around the globe, curated by our keen-eyed team of editors
  • Your choice of weekly region-specific newsletters, delivered to your inbox.
  • Smartphone- and tablet-friendly website.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.

More World Politics Review