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World a step closer to key climate cash goal

A new pledge from Japanese prime minister Fumio Kishida​ could get developed countries one step closer to fulfilling a crucial climate cash promise.

Under the negotiations that led to the Paris Agreement in 2015, developed countries agreed to provide US$100 billion in climate finance each year by 2020. That deadline was missed, and previously was not on track to be completed until 2023.

But during the launch of a global methane pledge, US special presidential envoy for climate John Kerry​ announced Kishida was looking to provide US$10 billion over 5 years, adding US$2b to the annual pot.

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Kerry said, during the third day of the COP26 meeting, the Japanese government’s funds could be leveraged to provide another $8b from the World Bank and other sources.

This could mean the world meets the US$100b target in 2022, a year earlier than it would without the pledge.

Kerry warned that the details still need to be finalised. “It’s not done until it’s done, but I believe it can [be done].”

A priority for the 26th Conference of the Parties meeting, being held in Glasgow, is to find $100 billion of climate finance.

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A priority for the 26th Conference of the Parties meeting, being held in Glasgow, is to find $100 billion of climate finance.

The failure to meet the US$100b goal had undermined many parties’ faith in the Paris Agreement. Last month, Climate Change Minister James Shaw said that developing countries “feel like they’ve been hoodwinked”.

Before the summit, New Zealand increased its climate cash to US$0.9b (NZ$1.3b) over four years, or US$231 million in annual funds.

According to the New Zealand negotiating team at COP26, the $100b promise is repeatedly brought up during the climate negotiations, which are at the moment trying to resolve several outstanding details of the Paris Agreement.

Toby Fisher​, of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said hitting the target “could unlock parts of the negotiations”.

Olivia Wannan is reporting from Glasgow.



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