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Climate finance: investing in our collective future

The spiritual grandchild of the Rio Earth Summit agreement of 23 years ago, the universal climate agreement (UCA), is the world's best chance to limit global temperature increase to two degrees Celsius. The universal hope is that it will be adopted at the global climate change summit in Paris, France, in December 2015. The UCA is important because it will record different countries’ commitments to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions, and, this time around, developing countries, too, will make commitments to reduce their emissions—and they are looking for how to fund the actions they will need to take. 

How much money is needed by developing countries? Estimates are around US$ 450 billion per year from 2020 on: US$ 350 billion for reduced emissions and US$ 100 billion for adapting to the impacts of climate change. Some of this money will be provided by countries themselves. But to reach their emission reduction targets, a significant fraction will also need to come from developed countries in the form of official climate finance (OCF). These numbers may sound overwhelming, but context is paramount—they should be compared to net inflows of debt and equity into developing countries, which are estimated to be above US$ 1.2 trillion per year. 

For the complete article, please see Daily Development.