Policy ForumClimate Change

Is Weather Event Attribution Necessary for Adaptation Funding?

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Science  11 Nov 2011:
Vol. 334, Issue 6057, pp. 764-765
DOI: 10.1126/science.1211740

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International funds created largely for funding climate adaptation programs and projects in developing countries were first legally established through the seventh session of the Conference of the Parties (COP-7) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC) held in 2001 at Marrakesh. In 2009, at COP-15 in Copenhagen, delegates “took note” of a pledge from developed countries to commit U.S. $30 billion for the period 2010–2012, ramping up to $100 billion per annum by 2020, to support a mixture of climate adaptation and mitigation activities in developing countries. International adaptation finance has therefore been, and continues to be, a significant political issue for the FCCC and for international institutions, such as the World Bank, the Global Environment Facility, and regional development banks (1). Yet governance arrangements and allocation principles for these climate adaptation funds remain both underdeveloped and politically contested (2, 3). A Green Climate Fund for disbursing such funds was established at COP-16 in Cancún, and a Transitional Committee is currently developing operational documents for the fund to be adopted at COP-17 in Durban, South Africa, later this year.