Michael Bloomberg to plug US climate change funding gap

23rd April 2018


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Author

Derek Walter

Former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg has promised to contribute $4.5m (£3.2m) to help cover a climate change funding gap left by US president Donald Trump’s decision to pull the country out of the Paris Agreement.

This will provide the UN Climate Change Secretariat with 60% of the anticipated US government support for this year, and comes after Congress last month cut funding from $7.5m to $3m for 2018.

Bloomberg Philanthropies’ has also signalled its intention to make additional funds available should the US continue to make further cuts to the UN climate budget next year.

“The US pledged to work with the rest of the world to fight climate change under the Paris Agreement, and that includes providing our fair share of the funding to help countries reach their goals,” Bloomberg said.

“Our foundation will uphold our promise to cover any cuts to UN climate funding by the Federal government – and the American people will uphold our end of the Paris Agreement, with or without Washington.”

Bloomberg, who serves as the UN secretary-general’s special envoy for climate action, has emerged as one of the leading climate campaigners after Trump decided to quit the Paris Agreement.

The latest announcement builds on his work with the ‘We Are Still In’ coalition that has brought businesses, NGOs and local leaders together in support of climate change action.

Bloomberg also provided the majority of funding for the US Climate Action pavilion at COP23 last year when the federal government failed to provide the traditional exhibition space for American climate leadership.

His $4.5m contribution to the UN Climate Change Secretariat was greeted by the agency’s executive secretary, Patricia Espinosa, who highlighted the need for a collective response to global warming.

“When countries adopted the historic Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise, they also recognised that achieving that goal would take broad-based global climate action in all sectors, public and private,” she said.

“I welcome this generous contribution from Bloomberg Philanthropies as an important, practical recognition of our need to work together, and to step up our response to climate change.”

Image credit: Shutterstock

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