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Thomas Lifson

Opinion

Trump instigating collapse of UN Green Climate Fund

Thomas Lifson

July 6, 2018 (American Thinker) – Yesterday, a board meeting of the U.N. Green Climate Fund collapsed in bitterness, failing to approve any funding, and its executive director abruptly resigned.  Like so many other global warmist gatherings of well paid officials in luxurious and exotic locales, this one was supposed to share the joy of distributing other people's money and being praised for it.  But President Trump turned off the spigot from the United States Treasury, and nobody else was willing to step up and replace the American cash with his own.

Megan Darby reports in Climate Change News:

Howard Bamsey resigned as executive director of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) with immediate effect on Wednesday, in a bombshell finish to a fraught board meeting.

The Australian cited "pressing personal reasons" in his resignation letter, adding that it was best he leave before the next round of fundraising started.

It came as the four-day meeting in Songdo, South Korea collapsed with no decisions on 11 funding bids worth nearly $1 billion, or on how to top up the flagship climate finance initiative's dwindling resources.

The resources are dwindling because of President Trump's pullout from the Paris Climate Accord and his suspension of 2 billion taxpayer dollars slated for the fund:

As well as the US withholding $2bn of its pledge, the pot has lost some $1bn in value due to exchange rate fluctuations since 2014, officials reported.

That "exchange rate" loss strikes me as highly suspicious.  How does one lose that much without risky speculation?  The entire commitments to date, according to Bloomberg, have been only $3.7 billion.  Were the funds invested in Iranian rials?  Could a U.N. agency possibly be corrupt?  Perish the thought!

With resources dwindling, and nobody anxious to replace Uncle Sam, the applicants apparently have turned on one another:

With developing countries complaining their priorities were not properly represented, it took nearly two days to agree on the agenda for the meeting.

"I have never served on a board that is this dysfunctional and toxic in my life," said US representative Geoffrey Okamoto, as the discussion dragged on.

In the context of Donald Trump's US cutting off contributions to the fund, however, Okamoto's comment rankled with some.

"It is typical playing to the crowd," said Zaheer Fakir, who represents South Africa.  "The reason why it is dysfunctional and toxic is the way [the co-chairs] prepared for this board meeting."

He said there had been a "serious lack of consultation" and the chairs had not responded to comments regarding the agenda before the meeting.

Giving away other people's money to third-world countries in the name of "fighting climate change" used to be the sort of thing to delight a progressive's heart...until President Trump ruined the game, that is.

If one wants to really help the developing world, the focus ought to be on affordable energy production, not on fighting carbon dioxide emissions, an entirely theoretical danger, and one with many benefits (faster crop growth with less fertilizer, for instance).  Green power is expensive power, and poor countries need more energy to raise their standards of living.

Trump's refusal to contribute has driven a wedge between other wealthy countries and the developing world, which still expects governments to fulfil a collective promise to deliver $100bn climate aid a year by 2020, partly through the GCF. ...

Other major multilateral funds like the Global Environment Facility are also running low on climate cash and tightening their criteria.

If the other developed countries (I'm looking at you, Chancellor Merkel) aren't willing to replace the American cash, maybe they don't really believe all the scary predictions.  It's enough to make one suspect that we have been suckered all along.

Published with permission from the American Thinker.

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