At a gathering of G20 leaders in India on 10-11 September, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced the UK’s biggest ever single financial contribution to helping the world’s most vulnerable people adapt to and mitigate the impact of climate change.
The UK will contribute £1.62 billion (USD$2 billion) to the second replenishment of the Green Climate Fund (GCF), covering the period 2024 to 2027. The GCF is the largest global fund dedicated to supporting developing countries to reduce global emissions and helping communities adapt to the effects of climate change.
The pledge is part of the delivery of UK’s commitment announced at COP26 to spend £11.6 billion (USD$14.5 billion) on international climate finance between 2021 and 2026. It represents a 13% increase on the UK’s previous contribution to the GCF for the period of 2020 to 2023.
The scale of the climate crisis requires finance to be delivered with ever greater speed and the UK will work with the GCF to ensure it accelerates action to deliver for those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, such as Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
Addressing G20 leaders, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said:
‘The UK is stepping up and delivering on our climate commitments, both by decarbonising our own economy and supporting the world’s most vulnerable to deal with the impact of climate change.
This is the kind of leadership that the world rightly expects from G20 countries. And this government will continue to lead by example in making the UK, and the world, more prosperous and secure.’
Here in the Caribbean, the UK continues to listen to governments’ concerns on climate and environment issues and respond.
Unlocking climate finance in the Caribbean region is a key priority for the UK, which is why last week the UK’s Minister for the Caribbean signed an agreement worth £2.7m (USD$3.4m) with the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (5Cs) to help CARICOM Member States address the challenges they face in accessing and delivering climate finance.
And in Jamaica earlier this year, the UK announced a £7m (USD$8.7m) contribution to the taskforce which is piloting practical new approaches for accessing climate finance, with the eventual aim of replicating this model across the region to support national plans to address climate change.
Last week, responding to requests from Caribbean leaders, the UK also launched a call for research proposals on Sargassum seaweed. Recent influxes of Sargassum threatens the region’s marine ecosystems, economy, and public health. The UK invites partners to submit proposals for up to £300k (USD$374k) before 10th October.
The research should advance commercial, scalable, safe solutions to process, sink or store. Finding solutions to Sargassum influxes could be vital to the Caribbean’s sustainable development and climate resilience.
In the run-up to COP28, and the 4th International Conference on SIDS in 2024, the UK Government continues to advocate on behalf of SIDS. We are committed to building global consensus to support SIDS to address their unique vulnerabilities and to grow resilient economies. The UK is one of the leading actors to work for systems suited to small states, including in the GCF, where we are pushing to increase access to climate finance for SIDS. The UK is also supporting SIDS through our £500m (USD$624) Blue Planet Fund, including through initiatives such as our £36m (USD$45m) Sustainable Blue Economies programme.
The UK Government recognises that SIDS are global leaders in climate action and have a vital role in pressuring the big emitters to act. The UK is committed to delivering the promises of the Glasgow Climate Pact, including action on climate finance and addressing loss and damage.
Notes to Editor:
The collaboration with CCCCC (5Cs) under the Small Island Developing States and Resilience Programme (SIDAR) programme is aims to respond to the unique disadvantages SIDS face through small population sizes, remoteness, vulnerability to economic shocks and natural disasters and limited capacity. The programme will focus on building sustainable capacity and increasing access to affordable finance. The specific objectives of the programme are:
- to increase access to and scale of climate finance by Caribbean States, using a programmatic approach where possible
- to assist in building capacity to overcome structural constraints in selected countries
- to identify and prioritise climate actions that can be developed into bankable projects/programmes for the mobilisation of climate finance for select CARICOM Member States
- to explore and deploy innovative climate financing instruments, where appropriate, to increase scale
- to contribute to filling information and data gaps on climate finance in CARICOM Member States
- to coordinate with funding partners to simplify the requirements for accessing financing
More details on the Sargassum call for proposals are available here: https://www.gov.uk/international-development-funding/caribbean-sargassum-advancing-commercial-scalable-processing-or-storage