UK pledges cash for climate change and tackling poverty

12 Dec 17

The UK will pledge a £140m fund to tackle the effects of climate change on poorer countries, at the One Planet Summit in Paris today. 

The announcement comes as the UK international trade secretary Liam Fox pledged £18m to help 51 countries “trade their way out of poverty”, at the World Trade Organisation’s Ministerial Conference in Argentina on Monday. 

Prime minister Theresa May will announce the £140m funding to show the UK’s commitment to climate change, which is expected to be a “boost” to poorer communities around the world most affected by climate change. 

Impacts on these countries include deforestation, vulnerability to natural disasters and climate extremes.

May said: “Tackling climate change and mitigating its effects for the world’s poorest are among the most critical challenges that we face.

“That is why I am joining other world leaders in Paris today for the One Planet Summit and committing to stand firmly with those on the front line of extreme weather and rising sea levels.”

Fox said trade was one of the “greatest liberators of the world’s poor”, adding that global trade had transformed countries while creating more jobs.

He said: “As we prepare to leave the EU, we can move forward with more purpose, supporting developing countries to transform their economies through trade and resisting attempts to put up barriers to the open and free trade which has already benefited millions worldwide.”

At the climate change summit, May will also announce £15m of support for the reconstruction on the island of Dominica in the Caribbean, which is most affected by extreme weather conditions caused by climate change. The European Union also pledged €9bn (£7.94bn) at the summit. 

The UK will also give £8m of additional funding to other individual countries and territories in the Caribbean to help them become more resilient, including better crisis and response operations, training and improvement to communications systems, casualty management and mapping high risk areas, the government said.

The funding will include an additional £30m through the Department for International Development’s (DfID) Building Resilience and Adaptation to Climate Extremes and Disasters programme.

The UK will also commit to a further £87m through the DfID’s Forest Governance, Markets and Climate programme to help local communities, who depend on forests in the fight against illegal logging, and support trade in legal timber. 

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