People in some of the world’s poorest countries are receiving as little as $1 each a year to help them cope with the impacts of the climate crisis, despite rich countries’ promises to provide assistance.
Climate finance is intended to help developing countries cut greenhouse gases and protect their people from the consequences of climate breakdown, and forms a core part of the Paris agreement. Rich countries pledged more than 10 years ago to provide £100bn a year to the poor by 2020, but it is not certain that these commitments are being met.
Last week the UK unveiled its strategy for providing climate finance as part of its presidency of Cop26, this year’s vital UN climate summit being held in November in Glasgow. However, no new funding was announced and no data has yet been produced showing whether the pledges of $100bn are likely to be met this year.
A new analysis of climate finance by the charity WaterAid suggested that existing climate finance is not reaching the poorest and most vulnerable, who are likely to be worst affected by the climate crisis. The charity’s report found that half of all countries receive less than $5 per person per year in climate finance.
Yemen received about $1.17 for each of its people per year on average between 2010 and 2017, WaterAid’s analysis found, despite the country being ranked at 29th in the world’s most vulnerable to the impacts of climate breakdown.
The figure for Sudan was $1.33, despite it being the seventh most vulnerable country in the world. Angola, another of the 50 most vulnerable, received $1.58 per person per year over the period, and the Central African Republic – 16th in the most vulnerable ranking – received $1.61 per person per year.