UN Chief puts spotlight on financing Media Release

Jul 31, 2009 - 11:36am

The Climate Institute today welcomed the focus from UN Climate Chief Yvo de Boer on the need for an agreement on international financing for clean technology development and urged all Australian political parties to come clean on how they will support this critical financing, not just give more handouts to big polluters.

“Despite its crucial importance, Australian political parties have mostly ignored financing mechanisms needed to drive investment and help developing countries clean up their development and adapt to the impacts of unavoidable climate change,” said John Connor, Climate Institute CEO.

“Investments that enable developing countries to get their growth on a sustainable footing are investments in Australia’s prosperity as their and our economic fortunes are intertwined.”

Speaking on ABC Radio AM this morning Yvo de Boer said such significant international financing support was one of three key benchmarks for a successful climate agreement alongside ambitious emission reduction targets and engagement from major developing countries. Mr de Boer linked financing mechanisms to the success of the second benchmark in enabling developing country action in limiting emissions.

“No Australian political party has put forward their plans on how they will support such investments despite their protestations they all support an effective global climate agreement.

“Both the Government and the Coalition have backed the potential for ambitious reductions of 25% from 2000 levels but without a financing mechanism that is a hollow commitment because it won’t support an ambitious agreement.  Their debate needs to shift from more support for big polluters to more support for an effective agreement.

“The Climate Institute has consistently stressed the importance of this financing issue which has been treated like an uncomfortable cousin, if not a wild uncle, it’s time for all parties to come clean on how they will support such investments.

The Climate Institute has called on a significant proportion of CPRS permit revenues to be dedicated to clean technology development and adaptation support for developing countries.

“We support the Garnaut Review concept of having 20% of CPRS revenue dedicated to clean technology development split between Australia (10%) and developing country (10%) plus additional permit revenue going to support adaptation.

“This would be a crucial investment in sustainable development and clean technology markets as well as geo-political stability in our region.”

The Climate Institute repeated its call for all parties to strengthen and pass the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme before the Copenhagen climate talks.

“Strengthening and passing the CPRS and other clean energy policies is not just an effective demonstration of political and public support for Australian climate action, it is a crucial step in growing a sustainable and successful clean energy economy,” concluded Mr Connor.

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