Although policies and planning to adapt to growing climate change, funding and implementation are lagging behind, a new report launched on Thursday by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) said.
God Adaptation Gaps Report 2021: The Gathering Storm calls for increased funding and action to address the growing effects of climate change.
“As the world seeks to step up efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions – efforts that are not yet strong enough anywhere – it must also dramatically increase its game to adapt to climate change.” said Inger Andersen, h UNEP Producer.
‘Step change’ in ambition
Even if countries were “shut off the tap” regarding emissions today, she added, climate impacts would remain for decades to come.
“We need a step change in the adaptation aspirations for financing and implementation in order to significantly reduce the damages and losses as a result of climate change,” Said Mrs. Andersen. “And we need it now.”
Countries are now on a trajectory of 2.7 degrees until the end of the century. Even if warming is maintained at 1.5 degrees or 2 degrees, as described in the 2015 agreement, climate risks remain.
Close the gap
UNEP said greater ambition towards adaptation, especially for funding and implementation, is also critical to prevent existing gaps from widening.
The report found that adaptation costs are expected to be at the high end of $ 140 to $ 300 billion a year by the end of this decade, and $ 280 to $ 500 billion a year by 2050,
Moreover, the cost in developing countries is estimated at five to 10 times the current funding flows of public adaptation. In 2019, these countries received approximately $ 76.9 billion in climate funding for the planning and implementation of reduction and adjustment.
The opportunity of COVID-19
The report also revealed how countries are missing out on the opportunity to use fiscal recovery from the state COVID-19 A pandemic to prioritize “green” economic growth that also supports adaptation to climate impacts such as droughts, fires and floods.
Only a small portion of the $ 16.7 trillion in incentive funding worldwide went into adaptation.
As of June, less than a third of the 66 countries surveyed had explicitly funded COVID-19 measures to address climate change. Future government spending may also be hurt by the increased cost of debt service, combined with a decline in public revenues, especially in developing countries.
Progress is being made
The report’s authors also pointed to areas for progress. For example, nearly 80 percent of countries have adopted at least one national-level adaptation planning tool, such as a plan, strategy, policy or law, representing a seven percent increase since 2020.
In addition, the top 10 donors funded more than 2,600 projects with a major focus respectively, during the period between 2010 and 2019, indicating increasing efforts.
In addition, UNEP has said countries need to increase funding for public adaptation through direct investment and by overcoming barriers to private sector involvement.
They should also consider “high-end climate scenarios”, as detailed in the latest assessment by the UN Scientific Body, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
In addition, governments need to use post-epidemic fiscal recovery to prioritize interventions that will lead to both economic growth and resilience to climate change.
Authorities should also establish “integrated approaches to risk management” as well as flexible disaster finance frameworks, the report added, while richer countries should help developing countries “free up fiscal space.”