Climate Change Response (Bilateral)

FY2015 Funding Recommendation:  
$485 million

 

Funding History

       Enacted   

       President's FY2015 Request   

       InterAction's FY2015 Recommendation

 *Estimated
**Data Unavailable


Justification

 Key Facts

  • By 2050, the warming and acidification of oceans as a result of climate change is projected to result in the classification of nearly all coral reefs as threatened, which would adversely impact reef fisheries and the approximately 500 million people who rely on these ecosystems for their livelihoods.1

  • Every dollar invested in climate change adaptation can generate returns of $1.45-$3.03.

  • If the U.S. had just 14% of the clean technology market in the developing world, we could create 280,000-850,000 new jobs in the U.S.

Through the U.S. Global Climate Change Initiative (GCCI), bilateral climate funds help the most vulnerable countries adapt to climate impacts. These funds also help countries mitigate greenhouse gases through clean energy development and sustainable landscape management. A recent World Bank report documents the widespread human suffering and increasing economic damage across all regions over the past decade resulting from extreme weather and other impacts of temperature increases that have already occurred (1.4 ºF above pre-industrial levels).

Bilateral investments addressing climate change and extreme weather are essential to meet the basic needs of poor people for climate-resilient development. Investments in adaptation, clean energy and sustainable landscapes promote global security, minimize instability, reduce the cost of disasters, address global hunger and health, protect long-standing U.S. investments in global development and conservation, and increase economic opportunities for U.S. businesses and workers. Every dollar invested in adaptation can generate returns of $1.45-$3.03; if the U.S. had just 14% of the clean technology market in the developing world, we could create 280,000-850,000 new jobs in the U.S.

InterAction recommends $485 million for GCCI bilateral assistance, including $190 million for adaptation (based on the Senate’s recommended level for FY2013), as well as $171.5 million for clean energy and $123.5 million for sustainable landscapes programs (based on the President’s recommended level for FY2014). This recommended level includes some funding from the International Organizations & Programs account for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change/UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Montreal Protocol to support adaptation and clean energy programming.

Success Story:

Creating courses to combat climate change

Forested areas cover approximately one-quarter of the Asia-Pacific region, providing a wide array of benefits. Cambodia’s forests play an important role for 85% of the rural population. However, they are disappearing rapidly. Cambodia’s forests are being destroyed at a rate of 0.5% per year. The clearing of the forests leads to higher greenhouse gas emissions and contributes to global climate change. 

Professor Bunleng Se knew that his home country of Cambodia was vulnerable to climate change.Yet Se, who teaches at the Royal University of Phnom Penh, struggled to convey the true implications of climate change to his students. That changed when Se joined 32 other professors from 12 Southeast Asian universities and three U.S. universities to develop and test climate change teaching materials. Through the USAID-funded Lowering Emissions in Asia’s Forests (LEAF) regional program, Se and his team developed four climate change modules: basic climate change, forest carbon monitoring and measurement, low emission land use planning, and social and environmental soundness.

Se now incorporates these new materials into his courses, and his students are more actively engaged. They are also better able to describe technical concepts like climate methodology and the effects of greenhouse gas emissions.

“I am more confident in my teaching methods and the materials I use, and better able to inspire my students to understand, care about, and tackle climate change,” he says.

Photo Credit: Nicole Kravec/Winrock International

 


References 

1 Collins Rudolph, John. "Under the Sea, Coral Reefs in Peril," The New York Times, June 4, 2011. 

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