Nations failing to fund climate adaptation — UN

Nations failing to fund climate adaptation — UN

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Print this page Email A Friend!

PARIS, France (AFP) — The world is falling short of promises made under the Paris climate deal to help the most vulnerable nations deal with the increasingly devastating impacts of climate change, according to the United Nations.

Adaptation — reducing the fallout among communities and increasing their capacity to deal with climate-related disasters such as floods and drought — is a pillar of the landmark 2015 accord, which aims to chart a path away from catastrophic warming.

The deal requires signatories to implement adaptation measures through national planning, but also through funding to at-risk countries.

The UN Environment Programme Adaptation Gap report found that the current finance levels of around US$30 billion annually for adaptation fell far short of the annual cost in developing nations of US$70 billion.

It said the true cost of adapting to climate impacts in these nations could be as high as US$300 billion every year by the end of the decade and US$500 billion by mid-century.

"The hard truth is that climate change is upon us," said Inger Andersen, UNEP executive director.

"Its impacts will intensify and hit vulnerable countries and communities the hardest — even if we meet the Paris Agreement goals of holding global warming this century to well below 2C."

UNEP called for a drastic scale-up of public and private finance for adaptation, as well as increased investment in nature-based solutions such as protecting and sustainably restoring ecosystems.

- Limit losses -

With just over 1C of warming since the start of the industrial era, Earth is already experiencing more intense and frequent extreme weather such as droughts and flooding, as well as storms supercharged by rising seas.

Much of the devastation wrought by climate-linked disasters falls on developing nations, and despite promises to help out financially, richer countries still aren't hitting their adaptation funding targets.

UNEP said funding for adaptation currently represented just five percent of all climate finance.

With the cost of natural disasters set to skyrocket this century, hard-hit nations are finding it difficult to secure the finance to rebuild after extreme events.

Mozambique, which was battered by twin cyclones in early 2019, said that one year since the disasters it had received less than a quarter of the estimated US$3 billion it needed to recover.

The UN report found that cutting greenhouse gas emissions will provide a long-term economic benefit by reducing the costs associated with climate change.

Achieving the 2C Paris Agreement temperature rise limit could curb losses in annual growth to 1.6 per cent, compared with 2.2 per cent for 3C of warming — the current trajectory if nations' current Paris pledges are upheld.

Under the deal's "ratchet" mechanism, countries are supposed to file new emissions reduction plans — known as nationally determined contributions, or NDCs — every five years.

The deadline for the first round of new NDC submissions was December 31, 2020. However just 71 countries representing under a third of global emissions have done so.

UNEP says global emissions must fall 7.6 per cent annually this decade to keep the more ambitious Paris temperature target of 1.5C in play.

Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at




1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed:

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email:

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

comments powered by Disqus



Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon