Here’s good news for tackling climate change: the Green Climate Fund has announced it will only invest in energy projects that depart from “business as usual” and have a major impact to counteract climate change. The recently established Green Climate Fund (GCF) aims to make an ambitious financial contribution to global efforts in meeting goals set out to combat climate change. Reuters reports that the recent announcement was made on the back of a letter from environmental organizations and development agencies that called on the GCF not to allow its funds to be used to finance fossil fuels or other polluting energy sources – either directly or indirectly.
GCF Executive Director Héla Cheikhrouhou told Reuters she feels there is a mandate to move beyond current paradigms when it comes to energy. “I think there is genuine appetite to really move the boundaries and move into those areas that have so far not been the mainstream of investments in terms of technologies,” Cheikhrouhou said. She added that GCF’s board has set out three areas of energy technology where it would like to concentrate efforts: clean energy solutions, efficient cities and industries, and clean transport. “In those three result areas … there is a clear wish to sharply move away from business as usual,” she said, speaking from the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru.
The GCF, which was established by the United Nations with the goal of raising $100 billion per year in climate financing by 2020, currently has more than $10 billion worth of funding to work with, and plans to provide those resources to assist poorer countries in the development of greener energy systems and help them tackle the impacts of climate change. Cheikhrouhou notes that in order to get funding, potential recipients need to prove the project promotes a “paradigm shift” and has a significant climate impact.