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UN Green Climate Fund: good for bankers, bureaucrats, but not so much the poor

Green Climate Fund, Logo. UN Green Climate Fund (GCF) — nice rort if you can get it

The UN climate fund was set up in 2010 but has yet to send a single dollar of project money to its star sinking island (which isn’t sinking, but is poor).

The NY Times has a long article describing how billions of dollars is being spent, but somehow it seems to be going to the wrong places. Given the lack of accountability, voters, and elections, who could have seen that coming?

The  GCF GONGO is ruled by a Board of 24 people who jetset to Korea, hand out other people’s money, and get applause. In 2012 they were seeking immunity from all laws and taxes. Presumably they succeeded. In 2014, they were caught funding a new coal power station in Indonesia to reduce carbon emissions. I wondered if that was rorting, cronyism, or ‘success’. Greens were not happy. Now we find out that the rest of the money is ending up with the renewables industry, investment bankers, and bureaucrats:

U.N. Climate Fund Promised Billions to Poor Nations. For Some, the Wait Is Long.

Transparency, not so good:

The observers took issue, for example, with a proposed project that would hand out $265 million in equity and grants to Geeref Next, a Luxembourg-based investment fund that proposed to finance renewable energy or energy efficiency projects in about 30 countries — with no explicit plan to disclose what those projects would be.

Money was supposed to go to cute local enterprises, but ended up in bank accounts in London:

…why the fund’s finances, set up to back locally owned projects that reach the most vulnerable communities, were going toward private-sector enterprises led by global investment firms — like $110 million in loans and grants for solar projects in Kazakhstan led by London-based United Green Energy and the investment arm of Kazakhstan’s sovereign wealth fund.

Fifty million dollars went on payments to things like a Hydro Dam in Tajikistan. But if the climate models are right, there will be no water in it. (At least we know there’s no risk of that.)

Ninety percent of the funds are not going towards the original mandate:

….less than a tenth of the funding has gone to the kind of projects that make up the fund’s mandate: those owned and controlled by the poorer nations themselves.

How many billion do we need to pay to get someone to answer the phone?

The fund’s secretariat did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

Kiribati needs desalination to get safe water. Instead the UN fund gave them half a million to prepare a new application.

Kiribati scored a small victory this year when it qualified for a $586,000 grant to help the country prepare a new application to the fund.

The UN excuse – they are beginners:

“But we just started. There are competing interests — from countries, from the private sector, and we are trying to wade through this maze of conflicting interests,” he said. “We will get there.”

Only seven years in and nothing to show for it. Lucky their world is not facing a crisis.


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