World Bank scales up war to cut carbon emissions
By MEGAN ROWLING
THE WORLD BANK will give equal weight to curbing emissions and helping poor countries deal with the "disastrous effects" of a warming world as it steps up investments to tackle climate change in the first half of the 2020s, it said on Monday.
The bank and its two sister organisations plan to double their investments in climate action to about $200 billion from 2021-2025, with a boost in support for efforts to adapt to higher temperatures, wilder weather and rising seas.
The latest figures on international climate funding for developing nations show barely a quarter has been going to adaptation, with the bulk backing clean energy adoption and more efficient energy use, aimed at cutting planet-warming emissions.
"We live in a new normal in which disasters are more severe and more frequent," World Bank CEO Kristalina Georgieva said.
"We have to prioritise adaptation everywhere, but especially in the most vulnerable parts of the world," she said, pointing to the Horn of Africa and the Sahel, coastal regions and small island states.
Of the $100 billion the World Bank plans to make available in the five years from mid-2020, half would go to adaptation measures, it said.
Those include building more robust homes, schools and infrastructure, preparing farmers for climate shifts, managing water wisely and protecting people's incomes through social safety nets, Ms Georgieva added.
The World Bank said the money would also improve weather forecasts, and provide early warning and climate information services for 250 million people in 30 developing countries.
"Climate change is an existential threat to the world's poorest and most vulnerable. These new targets demonstrate how seriously we are taking this issue," World Bank Group president Jim Yong Kim said in a statement.