The Global South needs $2 trillion a year to tame and manage climate

The Global South needs $2 trillion a year to tame and manage climate


Developing and emerging economies – excluding China – will need investments well over $2 trillion annually through 2030 if the world is to halt the global warming juggernaut and manage its effects, according to a UN-backed report released Tuesday, according to a UN-backed report released on Tuesday.

A trillion dollars should come from rich countries, investors and multilateral development banks, according to the analysis commissioned by Britain and Egypt, who are respectively hosting the 2021 UN climate summit in Glasgow and this week’s COP27 event in Sharm el-Sheikh .

The rest of the money — about $1.4 trillion — must come from domestic sources, both private and public, the report said.

Current investment in emerging and developing countries other than China is approximately $500 billion.

The new 100-page analysis, Finance for Climate Action, is presented as an investment plan to make the global economy greener fast enough to meet the Paris Climate Agreement goals of bringing global temperatures below 2 degrees Celsius and, if possible, to 1, to limit 5 °C.

Warming beyond this threshold, scientists warn, could push the Earth into an uninhabitable greenhouse state.

“Rich countries should recognize that investing in climate action in emerging and developing countries is also a matter of equity in their vital self-interest – and given the serious impact of their high current and past emissions,” said one of the report’s leaders , the economist Nicholas Stern, who also authored a seminal report on the economics of climate change.

The report is one of the first to show the investments needed in the three broad areas of the UN climate talks: reducing greenhouse gas emissions that drive warming (mitigation), adapting to future climate impacts (adaptation), and compensating the poor and vulnerable Nations for unavoidable damage that has already occurred, so-called “loss and damage”.

– Fossil fuel lock-in –

It calls for government grants and soft loans to double from about $30 billion a year today to $60 billion by 2025.

“These sources of funding are critical for emerging and developing countries to support land and nature restoration efforts and to protect and respond to loss and damage from the impacts of climate change,” the authors said.

“Emerging Market Countries” include major economies in the Global South that have experienced rapid growth – coupled with rising greenhouse gas emissions – over the past few decades, including India, Brazil, South Africa, Indonesia and Vietnam.

Historically part of this group, China was excluded from the new estimates, presumably because of its unique and hybrid status.

Its economy — the second largest in the world — is advanced in many ways, and Beijing has positioned itself as a major international investor in its own right through its “Belt and Road” initiative and promotion of “South-South” investment in the third world.

In the context of climate change, developing countries include the world’s poorest economies, many of them in Africa, and those most vulnerable to climate hazards, such as small island nations, whose existence is threatened by rising sea levels and intensifying hurricanes.

“Most of the growth in energy infrastructure and energy consumption projected over the next decade will occur in emerging and developing countries,” Stern said.

“If they commit to dependence on fossil fuels and emissions, the world will be unable to avoid dangerous climate change that is damaging and destroying billions of lives and livelihoods in both rich and poor countries.”

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