Thursday, December 3, 2009
Rebeca Grynspan, directora regional para América Latina y El Caribe del PNUD. ESPECIAL
- El motivo principal es la crisis global
El G-20 debe encabezar una solución financiera internacional,a severó
Al participar en el V Encuentro Empresarial Iberoamericano que tiene lugar en el Centro de Congresos de la capital portuguesa, apuntó que para ello el tema central es la percepción del riesgo.
En el evento, previo a la inauguración de la XIX Cumbre Iberoamericana de Jefes de Estado y de Gobierno, subrayó que en el diseño de esas estrategias es muy importante lo que hagan organismos internacionales, ya que Estados Unidos y China, las grandes economías del mundo, no pueden resolverlo solos.
'También sabemos que el aumento de la seguridad social y del gasto en salud y educación en China va a ayudar a este desbalance pero no es suficiente', añadió.
Al hablar sobre la crisis económica, manifestó su optimismo respecto al papel que ha jugado el Grupo de los 20 países en desarrollo oG-20 en la resolución de algunos aspectos, 'pero me parece que no deberíamos tener un sistema internacional fragmentado'.
'El G-20 debe encabezar una solución financiera internacional que converja con las instituciones mundiales y debe potenciarse el papel de los bancos regionales de desarrollo', abundó.
Grynspan participó en la mesa 'Perspectivas económicas y financieras I', junto a la secretaria general de la CEPAL, Alicia Bárcena y el secretario general de la Organización para la Cooperación y el Desarrollo (OCDE), José Angel Gurría, ambos mexicanos.
Entre los asistentes al foro estuvieron los ex presidentes de México, Vicente Fox y de Perú, Alejandro
The United States has proposed a new global fund that would direct billions of dollars to help poor countries prepare for climate disasters and adjust to low-carbon economies.
The fund would likely operate under the World Bank, U.S. Treasury officials said, and would be the main vehicle to deliver emissions reduction and adaptation measures throughout the world.
William Pizer, deputy assistant secretary for environment and energy at the U.S. Treasury Department, explained that the fund would contribute to a spectrum of projects from "building a solar park or creating a financial vehicle to support investments in energy efficiency to creating an insurance mechanism for disasters or crops."
The world's poorest countries also are among the most vulnerable to climate change and will be disproportionately affected by harsher droughts, rising sea levels and fiercer storms, scientists say. The World Bank estimates it will cost $75 billion to $100 billion annually for developing nations to accommodate a world that is warmer by 2 degrees Celsius.
Part of the global climate deal that nations are negotiating in U.N.-sponsored talks in Copenhagen next week involves the promise of substantial funding to help defray those costs.
Just how much money nations will put into the pot remains unknown. That is one of the prickliest questions that negotiators face. Yet while dollar figures -- or absence of them -- grab headlines, analysts say the architecture of the fund is one of the nuts-and-bolts issues fundamental to the climate talks.
"It's certainly a critical part of what needs to be addressed and concluded in the negotiations," said David Waskow, climate change program director at Oxfam America. "At the end of the day ... it's never a just a question about money, but also how the money is governed and spent."
An expected target of $7B to $10B
Countries are expected in Copenhagen to offer between $7 billion and $10 billion for immediate needs in poor countries, with about $1.3 billion expected to come from the United States. The United States has not declared how much it will allocate in the long term. Pizer didn't offer any clues, but said agreeing on a structure for delivering and accounting for the money would be a major step forward.
"I don't think we would be going down this avenue if we didn't see the need for scaling up funding in the future," he said.
Under the proposal the U.S. submitted in October -- which mirrors ideas put forward by Mexico and Australia -- the fund would be governed by a board made up equally of net donors and recipients. All countries except the least-developed nations would be expected to contribute "in accordance with their national circumstances and respective capabilities."
Elliot Diringer, vice president for international strategies at the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, noted that the proposal reflects "a growing view that some of the faster-growing developing countries are in a position to help," as well as industrialized ones. A number of environmental groups oppose the notion and say only rich countries should be expected to foot the bill for climate change.
In a recent analysis, ActionAid USA, Friends of the Earth US and the Sustainable Energy and Economy Network faulted the proposal for failing to force countries to contribute to the fund. The groups also argue that any money for poor countries to address climate change must be in addition to regular foreign assistance, and call for a board governed by a majority of developing countries.
"This is important so as to mirror the composition of parties in the UNFCCC [U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change] and to ensure that those most affected by climate change are in the majority on the governing bodies," the groups wrote.
Narrowly focused on easing burdens of climate change
Treasury officials said they envision a fund that can leverage private-sector investments as well as public funds. They described it as one of several financial arrangements available to help developing countries access funds for different needs.
Currently, the Global Environment Facility acts as the financing arm for the UNFCCC. Established within the World Bank, the coalition of 178 international government institutions manages several pots of money for climate change-related activities. Treasury officials said the new proposal still envisions a role for the GEF. But, they said, it would be more narrowly focused on helping developing nations set efficiency standards, regulate power sectors and take other steps to improve their institutions so clean energy projects can thrive.
"We think that if we're going to significantly scale up financing to deal with climate change, we need a different kind of vehicle," Pizer said. "In particular, we need a vehicle that is more focused on financing investments like the ones that are necessary [to address] climate change." A senior GEF official said the institution is not worried that it will be sidelined, but declined to say whether the agency supports the U.S. plan.
"We welcome all the proposals for this discussion," the official said.
The biggest fight, if there is one, will likely center around the involvement of the World Bank. Treasury officials said they believe the World Bank has the expertise, standards and "internal safeguards" to oversee the financing, though the fund would likely have a governing structure separate from the multilateral bank's normal channels.
Environmental activists have long fought the institution, arguing that it favors wealthy nations and funds too much fossil fuel development. But the U.S. proposal is also getting points from some nonprofit groups for taking a major step toward trying to solve one of the more complicated issues in the climate change negotiations.
"Hopefully, we can at least make some headway in developing the architecture," even if the dollar figure is unsettled, Diringer said.
Added Waskow, "It's really important that they've clearly said they support a new global fund for climate. It's the beginnings of building a bridge to developing countries."
Copyright 2009 E&E Publishing. All Rights Reserved.
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BY TOM MALITI
ASSOCIATED PRESS WRITER
NAIROBI, Kenya -- Developing countries will need tens of billions of dollars each year to cope with the effects of climate change such as floods and drought, the global head of the U.N.'s development arm said.
About 100 world leaders will be in Copenhagen next week for a summit on global warming, and the U.N. climate chief, Yvo de Boer, has told reporters that rich countries "must put at least $10 billion a year on the table."
Helen Clark, the administrator of the U.N. Development Program, said though that scientists and others believe that between $75 billion and $100 billion a year is needed to help poor nations cope with climate change.
"Developing countries are bearing the brunt of climate change now. It's not something that might happen in 10, 20, 30 years time," Clark told The Associated Press late Tuesday.
More than two years ago, a panel of hundreds of scientists commissioned by the world's governments released a report that said the poorest parts of the world, especially Africa and Asia, would be hit hardest by climate change.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says temperature rises will result in increased droughts and flooding in poor nations. Subsistence farmers in Africa and Asia are expected to be particularly hard hit.
In a report earlier this year, the International Food Policy Research Institute predicted 25 million more hungry children over the next four decades because of climate change's impact on crop production.
Negotiators in Copenhagen will seek a new agreement to curb emissions of climate-warming greenhouse gases. The key question is how to divide the responsibility for reducing emissions globally, with developing countries saying they should not be forced to commit to binding targets.
The conference had originally been intended to produce a final global warming treaty, but that now seems out of reach. Most leaders now hope the conference can produce a framework agreement, leaving only details, technical arrangements and legal language to be concluded over the next six to 12 months.
Clark, however, said that climate change also should be related to other issues, such as improving the living standards of billions of people in the world.
She said one way this can happen is by providing financial and technical support to poor nations, allowing them to meet their energy needs while producing little or no greenhouse gases.
With such support, "we will have the ability to bring energy to the huge numbers of people in our world, up to 2 billion people, who do not access have energy at the moment, who don't have electricity," Clark said.
Last month, the U.N. Development Program and World Health Organization released a report that described 2 billion people as lacking natural gas, propane or other modern fuels used for cooking or heating their homes. The report also said 1.2 billion more people live entirely without electricity.