A group of rich countries has broken their promise to provide $1.2 billion to help poor countries cope with the costs of global warming.
The countries promised the money in 2001 for a variety of environmental projects, but less than $180 million of the money has actually been paid out. The announcement comes two weeks before the UN holds climate change talks in Bali, and just after British Prime Minister Gordon Brown gave a speech saying richer countries must do more to help developing countries adapt to climate change. Britain has paid less than $20 million to the fund.
The agreement, made in Bonn in 2001, was for Canada, Norway, Switzerland, the EU, Iceland, and New Zealand to pay developing countries $410 million a year from 2005 to 2008. This was to help developing countries deal with the effects of climate change, which can largely be attributed to the developed world.
Christian Aid climate change policy analyst Andrew Pendleton said: “This represents a broken promise on a massive scale and on quite a cynical scale as well. Promising funds for adaptation is exactly the kind of incentive the rich countries will offer at Bali to bring the developing world on board a new climate deal. This is the signal we are seeing on all fronts, that the developed countries are unwilling to fulfill their moral and legal commitments.”
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