Rich and poor split on fund payouts

United Nations climate negotiators are finalising how to control the planned payouts from the new Adaptation Fund set up to help poor nations cope with climate change, Reuters reported. The talks are currently divided between rich and poor countries about how the fund -- which could grow to about US$300 million a year by 2012—should be administered.


Developing nations in Africa, Asia and Latin America want quick access to the fund –which is to be generated by a 2% tax on investments in clean energy projects in developing nations. However, the World Bank, which is the trustee of the Adaptation Fund and where wealthy nations have a prevailing voice, says it wants to ensure proper oversight of payouts.


Yvo de Boer, head of the UN Climate Change Secretariat, has stated that the Adaptation Fund payout system will be completed by the end of the week. De Boer wants the fund payments to begin next year and called the decision on this matter a "cornerstone" of the UN climate talks in Poznan, Poland.


Adapting to climate change — such as by developing drought-resistant crops or strengthening sea defences — is likely to cost tens of billions of US dollars a year by 2030, de Boer said. The willingness of many rich nations to pay for new climate projects is currently being tested by the economic recession.


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