BY ISN STAFF | July 6, 2016
The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee adopted a $500 million spending package for the Green Climate Fund late last week before Senators departed for the July 4th recess. The Green Climate Fund is a fund within the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change founded as a mechanism to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change.
According to The Hill, members approved the funding, via an amendment from Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and others, on a voice vote, despite strong opposition to the measure. The amendment removed a prohibition on funding to the fund and also provided $500 million in 2017 for the fund.
In November 2015, 1,200 participants of the Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice visited legislators Capitol Hill offices to call Green Climate Fund funding to address the needs of the 3 billion people most at risk to the consequences of climate change. This group of high school and college students from across the country joined many Catholic advocates in calling on Congress to enact funding, responding to the strong messages of Pope Francis’s encyclical Laudato Si’, which recently celebrated its first anniversary.
The $500 million approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee is part of the $3 billion that the United States has pledged over the next four years. According to Catholic Relief Services, U.S. contributions are just part of the $10 billion in pledges from a wide variety of countries representing diverse regions and income levels.
The GCF came out of the 2010 United Nations International Climate Change Conference and has been set up as an independent organization based in Seoul, South Korea. Its mission is to raise and allocate funds to projects that help mitigate and adapt to global warming. It was further