Arria-formula meeting on “Climate Finance for Sustaining Peace and Security”
Ambassador Harold Agyeman
Ghana Permanent Mission to the United Nations
March 09, 2022, ECOSOC Chamber
New York City
During the Arria-formula meeting on “Climate Finance for Sustaining Peace and Security”
I thank you, Mr. Chair, for giving me the floor.
Ghana welcomes the United Arab Emirates organisation of this Arria-formula meeting, with a focus on “Climate Finance for Sustaining Peace and Security”, at a time that the international community is facing commitment challenges in the mobilisation of funding to address the climate menace. We believe these discussions could play a useful role in re-igniting global efforts in addressing the climate financing challenges, and particularly its impact on peace and security.
At the outset it is important to reiterate the existential threat posed by climate change to humanity and regrettably the lack of political will in meeting the financing commitments to implement the measures required by developing countries, that contribute the least to global emissions yet suffer the most from the effects of climate change, to adapt in the near term to climate change even as common but differentiated actions are taken to mitigate the effects of climate change in the long run.
Climate finance is critical to the broad discussions on climate change, particularly for several fragile countries from the global South whose resilience are impaired by the lack of financial and technical capacity to adapt and thereby bearing the heavy brunt of the adverse effects of climate change, including floods, droughts, forest fires and cyclones.
Equally disturbing is the analytical report of the UNDP which revealed that out of $14 billion multilateral climate finance disbursed between 2014 and 2021, extremely fragile states received an average $2.1 per person of support, compared to $10.8 per person in fragile states, and $161.7 per person in non-fragile states. This development does not show the priority action
required to ensure that conflict-prone countries receive their fair share of climate funds to avoid worsening conflict situations.
It is not in doubt that in fragile countries, where the effects of climate change have been severe, the established arrangements for moderating the interests of different segments of society
have usually also been weak, undermining the sustenance of peace as we see in several parts of Africa where farmer-herder conflicts have usually followed the prolonged droughts and further
escalated other simmering drivers of instability.
In light of the above, I wish to share the following perspectives as part of our contribution to the discussions this morning:
First, we believe that conflict prone areas need climate funding more than ever in order not to exacerbate the situation. Ghana urges policy focus and an increase in climate funds by multilateral and bilateral financial institutions towards climate adaptation measures in such places. Indeed, as the 2018 UN-World Bank report on “Pathways for Peace” has estimated,
for every US$1 invested in conflict prevention there is a return of US$16 for the effort. Other reports also confirm that returns from investment in climate adaptation ranges from
$2 to $10 per every US dollar invested. We, therefore, encourage multilateral and bilateral financial institution to adopt a conflict-sensitive approach in climate financing in conjunction with local conflict-resolution mechanisms. We also encourage more innovative approaches in mobilizing climate funds to complement existing climate funding
arrangements, including broad-based public resource mobilisation models for repairing the commons.
Secondly, the duty of States to create an ‘enabling environment’ for climate policies and plans needs to be enhanced by integrating climate risk assessments and management into
their long-term strategies. Additionally, national authorities may be encouraged to adopt approaches that allow local leaders and stakeholders to actively participate in investment
design and implementation taking into consideration the heterogeneity of communities. The bottom-up ownership could enhance sustainability of programmes and the resilience
of local societies. In Ghana the NDCs have been mainstreamed into the national medium term development plans.
Thirdly, there is a need to ensure that climate-related risk assessments, risk management strategies, prevention strategies, and peacebuilding programs are gender-sensitive and supportive of women’s full, equal, and meaningful participation in decision-making and implementation. This can be achieved by integrating the impact of climate change and environmental degradation on women and girls into national policies as well as the national Women, Peace and Security agenda to enhance peacebuilding efforts. A whole of society approach by building the capacity of youth and involving them in decision making on climate issues is also critical.
Fourthly, Member States could consider a few indicators to determine the impact of climate financing on peace and security. The indicators could include the percentage (%) of people by gender permanently displaced from their homes as a result of flood, drought or rise in sea level, and, % of poor farmers and fishermen with access to facilities and grants, as well as % of area of natural terrestrial ecosystems in that have been damaged among a host of other indicators. Regarding deliverables, Member states could partner other climate finance actors to produce reports focusing on strengthening multilateral cooperation with private sector in identifying innovative ways of increasing climate financing. A joint fund-raising event to help mobile more resources for the climate fund is also encouraged.
In conclusion, Ghana believes that the battle against climate change cannot be won without adequate climate funds particularly in developing countries. We therefore call on all stakeholders
at the sub-regional, regional, and multilateral levels including donor partners to unite in their efforts in adopting innovative ways in mobilizing additional climate funds which is conflict
sensitive to help address the menace.
I thank you for your attention