House GOP moves to gut foreign climate aide
In the latest round of assaults on climate policy,
two House committees indicated plans this week to drastically reduce and
eliminate foreign aid for vital climate change initiatives, Jake Schmidt at the
National Resources Defense Council explains.
On Tuesday the House Foreign Affairs Committee
approved—with only Republican support—H.R. 2583, the Foreign Relations Authorization
Act, Fiscal Year 2012. The legislation includes an amendment by Representative
Mack (R – FL) to prohibit funding from being used to “support activities of the
Global Climate Change Initiative.”
Wednesday, the House Appropriations Committee will consider an Appropriations
Bill that includes a series of measures designed to stall or eliminate key
climate change programs. Altogether the bill:
- Eliminates funding for the Clean Technology
Fund and the Strategic Climate Fund, World Bank initiatives designed to help
impoverished nations develop clean energy sources and adopt climate resilient
- Bans U.S. funding for the International Panel on Climate
Change, the key body dedicated to understanding climate science
- Prohibits U.S funding of the UN Framework Convention on
Climate Change (UNFCCC), a treaty which was ratified and signed nearly 20 years
ago under Republican leadership.
- Drastically reduces funding to the Global Environment
Facility (GEF), an international program designed to help populations address vital environmental concerns.
- Cuts $2.2 billion from the Economic Support Fund and
Development Assistance account, which provide funding for bilateral State
Department and US Agency for International Development initiatives to address
climate change on an international level.
current funding levels, foreign aid to climate change initiatives accounts for less than .05% of the overall U.S. budget.