The European Union has today revealed it is to release an additional €4million to address climate change in the Maldives.
“Climate change is one of the most pressing development issues that we need to address in today’s world,” said EU Ambassador and Head of Delegation to Sri Lanka and the Maldives H.E. Mr David Daly Tin a press release today.
“The EU has always been at the forefront of concrete action against climate change, while Maldives has through its commitment to Carbon Neutrality and more recent pledge to become a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve at the Rio Summit, led the world by example,” he continued.
The EU press release today noted that this latest climate change grant to the Maldives brings the organisation’s overall contribution to €38million over the past four years.
Granting €6.5 million to the Climate Change Trust Fund in 2009, the EU became the first body to give funds to the scheme intended to assist the Maldives in its pledge to become carbon neutral by 2020.
The initiative was agreed between the EU, the World Bank and the administration of President Mohamed Nasheed – whose efforts to raise awareness of climate change brought international acclaim, most notably at the 2009 Climate Change Forum in Copenhagen.
In a recent report titled ‘Turn Down The Heat’, the World Bank reasserted the urgent need for concerted efforts to support the Maldives in adapting to climate change, due to a projected sea level rise of 115 centimetres by 2090.
The new EU funds will go towards replicating previous projects with a particular focus on the country’s two southernmost atolls – Addu and Fuvahmulah – which will also receive capacity building assistance for local government structures.
Local NGO Transparency Maldives has in the past noted the potential for corruption due to institutional weaknesses in the Maldives’ climate governance structures.
“The current projects, being implemented by the World Bank in partnership with the Government of Maldives, focuses specifically on renewable energy solutions, wetlands conservation, rainwater harvesting, coral reef monitoring and solid waste management,” stated the EU today.
A further 22,000 inhabitants are expected to benefit from the new projects in Fuvamulah, Addu, and parts of North Ari Atoll.
“It will enable the Government in implementing a clear strategy for wetland and drainage management, ecotourism and community rainwater harvesting. The project also aims at partnering with tourist resorts for coral reef monitoring and demonstrates the manner in which efficient monitoring can be used as a tool to support decision-making, particularly in the context of coral reef protection and conservation,” read the release.
During the summer, the United States also pledged US$7.2 million for global climate change adaptation project, also including local level capacity building and exploration of further avenues for cooperation on climate change.