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World Bank report: Adaptation finance

World Bank study estimates $75-100 billion a year needed
for climate change adaptation


Solar panels (iStockphotos)

Preliminary findings of a new global study by the World Bank, the Economics of Adaptation to Climate Change, estimate that the costs of adapting to climate change in developing countries could be $75-100 billion per year.


The research, funded by Dutch, Swiss and UK governments, aims to develop greater knowledge and understanding of the potential costs of adapting to climate change.


Climate finance is a key to unlocking the Copenhagen deal, and includes finance for adaptation, mitigation and other elements such as technology and avoiding deforestation.


The final report is due for publication in early 2010, following consultation including work at the country level to assess the risks posed by climate change and design strategies for adaptation. Findings from this study – and others on adaptation that have recently been published - will help inform discussions and negotiations on the levels of financial assistance needed to help developing countries manage the impacts of climate change.


A DFID spokesperson said: 'These early findings underline the huge costs the developing world could face over the next 40 years in adapting to climate change. Research like this is a vital contribution to the debate and highlights the urgency of committing new and additional funds to help secure a deal at Copenhagen.'


Katherine Sierra, World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development said: 'Roughly the costs of adapting to a 2ºC warmer world are of the same order of magnitude as current Overseas Development Assistance. Faced with the prospect of huge additional infrastructure costs, as well as drought, disease and dramatic reductions in agricultural productivity, developing countries need to be prepared for the potential consequences of unchecked climate change. In this respect, access to necessary financing will be critical.'


The UK's position on climate finance was discussed recently at the G20 in Pittsburgh. Although the UK would have welcomed more substantial progress on climate finance in Pittsburgh, we welcome the commitment from G20 Finance Ministers to look again at the issue when they meet in St Andrews in November. Climate finance remains an important element of the talks in the run up to Copenhagen and the UK is working hard to ensure progress ahead of the December talks.


Related links

The World Bank press release

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