Press releases

Europe tops Green Climate Fund leaderboard

Europe tops Green Climate Fund leaderboard

Today’s Berlin meeting marks an historical point in the international climate finance agenda as pledges total $9.3bn and provided the springboard to a successful outcome in Lima. Further pledges before or at the Lima COP20 should help increase this to reach the widely stated $10bn goal.

E3G has assessed how the pledges stack up on a per capita basis. The figures demonstrate that Sweden $0.5bn is outstanding representing over $60 per capita. Coming in second at around $25/capita is Norway, followed by 4 European countries, Finland (just over $18/capita), UK (just under $18/capita), France ($16/capita) and Denmark ($13/capita). EU leadership on climate finance is further demonstrated by the EU average for all countries that pledged reaching almost $12/capita.

Sweden’s pledge is also significant in being over and above its official development assistance (ODA) commitments which many consider as fulfilling the UN Climate Convention’s agreement that finance provided should be additional. Also of interest to note is that the UK pledge which will be up to a maximum of £720m ($1.13) and is “based on the assumption the Board concludes the work it has already commissioned, to ensure key operational elements of the Fund are in place, so it can start supporting projects as quickly as possible. These include accrediting implementing entities, agreeing the investment criteria, and the Private Sector Facility Business Plan.”

President Obama’s $3bn commitment last weekend also comes with some specific objectives: As with other multilateral funds, the US contribution should not exceed 30 percent of total confirmed pledges. After today’s pledging session, their contribution is slightly above 30 percent of the total, so their final contribution could be lowered unless some other countries come forward with pledges by the end of the year. The US also wants to ensure a significant portion of its pledge goes to the Private Sector Facility (PSF) as would be consistent with the GCF’s allocation criteria. Securing these objectives is likely to help ensure Congressional approval for appropriation of the funds, which will not be straightforward now that Republicans control both the House of Representatives and the Senate. However the US also wants to retain the right to allocate resources to other multilateral funds if the GCF fails to make sufficient progress next year.

Unexpected contributions were announced by Mongolia and Panama, which come on top of Mexico, South Korea and Indonesia (who previously announced a contribution). At today’s meeting Canada and Poland signalled they will announce their contributions to the Fund before the end of the year. Noticeable by their absence was Australia, with Tony Abbot appearing to dismiss the GCF despite the best efforts of President Obama and other leaders at the G20 Brisbane Summit last weekend.


Amal-Lee Amin:

“Today’s pledges signals the commitment of many developed countries to assisting developing countries in their efforts to tackle climate change. The near $10bn represents the most significant announcement of new funding for climate change in a single day. Based on our analysis of commitments on a per capita basis Sweden must undoubtedly be applauded as the climate finance hero!”

“Whilst the $10bn may be compared to the $100bn, it is important to recognise that most of these Governments are providing climate finance through a range of other multilateral and bilateral sources. The challenge now for Lima is to launch the process that will confirm by Paris how the 2009 commitment to mobilise $100bn/year by 2020 will be met and international climate finance commitments post 2020.”

Liz Gallagher says:

“The GCF pledges top off the good news last week from the US and China for the prospects of an ambitious climate agreement in Paris next year, and Lima in a few weeks time. Finance is going to be a core component of the final agreement. In Lima, these pledges will need to be put in context for how developed countries will make progress on delivering the $100bn. The GCF pledges are the beginning, but not the end”.


Amal-Lee Amin, Associate Director at E3G, +44 (0)7883 530 792,


UK Government Press Release

US Government Press Release

Today’s E3G Newsletter covering the GCF


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