Big Polluters Pay Up! Action at Bonn SB60

Thursday 13 June 2024, Bonn (Germany) –  At the close of the UN’s mid-year climate negotiations ahead of what is expected to be another record-breaking summer, developed countries blocked any progress towards agreeing on a new finance goal. Civil society organizations including Friends of the Earth International alongside developing countries are calling on those most responsible for the climate crisis, developed countries, to pay up for mitigation, adaptation and the loss and damage already caused by climate change like the devastating floods ravaging Brazil.

Sara Shaw from Friends of the Earth International, says:

Developing countries need trillions in new public finance for adaptation, loss and damage and for a just transition away from fossil fuels. But developed countries are not even offering crumbs from the table and are blocking all progress. They want developing countries to accept loans which will further fuel debt, and are pushing already discredited carbon market finance schemes which causes grave harm in the Global South. This is a disaster.

Meena Raman from Friends of the Earth Malaysia, says:

“We’re hearing a narrative from developed countries that progress was blocked by developing countries on mitigation. The problem is that if you don’t have finance, how do you expect developing countries to advance? Developed countries want to muddy the waters and blur the outcome to not focus on finance so that they can shift the blame onto developing countries. We cannot allow this blame game to happen and we cannot allow the shifting of responsibilities.”

Rich countries are also making efforts to hide their weak progress on emissions reductions and finance by burying a recent revealing report by the UNFCCC. On the basis of their own reporting to the UNFCCC, total emissions of developed countries are projected to increase between 2020 and 2030, and no developed countries will achieve their 2030 climate target (NDC). The report also shows that total annual climate finance for 2019-2020 averaged only just over half of the already wholly inadequate $100billion a year committed.  

Bonn also saw a further session of the Oceans Dialogue – a seemingly benign look at ‘strengthening ocean-climate action’ which risks becoming a dash for ocean based ‘nature-based solutions’ and geoengineering and an expansion of carbon offsets. 

Sara Shaw continues:

We know that when corporations see a new market to profit from, they will not hesitate. Our oceans are not for sale. And risky geoengineering techniques such as seeding the ocean with iron pellets to create plankton blooms are dangerous and must not move forward. As the global carbon market inexorably advances despite all our opposition, we see the toxic threat of damaging technofixes combining with a supercharged market that wrecks nature, harms people and leads to no emissions reductions.

Looking ahead to COP29 in Baku (Azerbaijan) in November, agreement  on an ambitious figure for public, grant-based climate finance at the scale needed must be reached in order to ensure just and equitable progress on mitigation, adaptation and loss and damage. 

Meena Raman continues:

“Rich countries need to come to Baku with finance numbers. They must stop the funding of bombs and wars and subsidies to fossil fuel companies, and pay up the climate finance to secure climate justice.”

Media contacts

Ghislaine Fandel // ghislaine@foei.org // Remote 5-8 June // in Bonn 9-13 June // speaks English/French/Spanish