Five months behind schedule, the board of the newest and largest international financing mechanism aimed at dealing with the effects of climate change, the Green Climate Fund, is finally slated to meet this week, just ahead of a late-summer deadline.
On Monday, however, insiders admitted that funding plans for the ambitious initiative – 100 billion dollars a year after 2020, in addition to dealing with a massive shortfall until then – remain unclear.
“We are expecting no serious discussion about the 100 billion dollars at this meeting,” Omar El-Arini, an Egyptian member of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) Board, told journalists Monday, speaking from Geneva.
“We have had very little time to discuss the architecture of funding.”
Given that the board’s responsibility lies in figuring out how to disburse, not raise, the eventual cash, El-Arini said that the upcoming meet, scheduled for August 23-25 in Geneva, would most likely focus on procedural issues. These would include rules for board meetings, the budget for a secretariat and a host country in which to house it.
When the GCF was proposed, under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2009, its aim was to steer money towards the world’s poorest countries to deal with the effects and causes of climate change. At the time, developing countries were asking for 400 billion dollars per year, but eventually settled on a quarter of that.