Oxfam on Covid inequality, tax wealthy to pay for vaccines, defend local weather

A pedestrian wearing a face mask delivers food to a homeless man who died on March 23.

Tolga Akmen | AFP | Getty Images

The pandemic has made the rich richer while the income of the rest of the world – about 99% of humanity – has plummeted, according to a new Oxfam report titled “Inequality Kills”.

The wealth of the world’s 10 richest men has doubled from $700 billion to $1.5 trillion during the pandemic, according to the global charity said on Monday.

“It has never been more important to right the violent injustices of this obscene inequality by reclaiming the power and extreme wealth of the elites, including through taxes – to put that money back into the real economy and save lives,” Gabriela said , Executive Director of Oxfam International Bucher.

A 99% windfall tax on the pandemic profits of the world’s 10 richest men would raise enough money to pay for vaccines for the world — and fund various social measures for more than 80 countries, the report said.

Billionaire wealth has risen more sharply since the start of Covid compared to the past 14 years, and a new billionaire has been minted every 26 hours since the pandemic began, Oxfam said.

The CEOs of the Covid vaccine developers Modern and BioNTech earned billions in 2020 as a result of the pandemic.

At the same time, the vast majority of the population is worse off after losing income during Covid-19, and 160 million more people fell into poverty, the press release said.

windfall tax

One way to “recoup” the huge gains billionaires made during the crisis is to tax the money billionaires have made since the pandemic began, the report said.

“A one-time windfall tax of 99% on the wealth gains from Covid-19 for the 10 richest men alone would generate $812 billion,” the report said.

“These resources could be enough to produce enough vaccines for the entire world and to fill funding gaps in climate action, universal health and social protection, and efforts to combat gender-based violence in over 80 countries,” it said.

If these ten men lost 99.999 percent of their wealth tomorrow, they would still be richer than 99 percent of everyone on the planet.

Gabriella books

Managing Director, Oxfam International

Even after taxes, the world’s 10 richest men would still be billionaires and, as a group, have increased their wealth by $8 billion since the pandemic began, the report said.

“If these ten men lost 99.999 percent of their wealth tomorrow, they would still be richer than 99 percent of all people on this planet,” said Bucher.

Beyond a one-time windfall tax, governments must also introduce or increase permanent wealth and capital taxes to “fundamentally and radically reduce wealth inequality,” the report says.

The Oxfam report was released ahead of this week’s virtual meetings of the World Economic Forum, where world leaders will discuss global challenges.

Democrat local weather plan provides tax breaks for EVs that price as much as $80,000

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Democratic MPs on Wednesday reveals a revised Social Spending and Climate Protection, which expands an electric vehicle tax credit of up to $ 12,500 for more expensive cars and suggests a lower income limit for buyers who are eligible for the credit.

The House Democrats update makes vans, sport utility vehicles, and trucks eligible for full tax credit at a cost of up to $ 80,000. The previous bill capped loans for vans priced at $ 64,000, SUVs priced at $ 69,000, and trucks priced at $ 74,000.

The proposal also limits the full tax credit for individual taxpayers reporting a modified adjusted gross income of $ 250,000 or $ 500,000 on joint tax returns. The previous plan had caps of $ 400,000 for individual submissions and $ 800,000 for joint submissions.

The transportation sector is one of the largest emitters of US greenhouse gas emissions, accounting for around a third of its emissions annually. The transition from gas vehicles to electric cars and trucks will be critical to tackling climate change.

The Democratic proposal includes a $ 4,500 tax incentive on purchases of an electric vehicle made in a unionized factory. Above all, car manufacturers would benefit from the regulation, such as General Motors and fordwhose workers in production are represented by the United Auto Workers union.

Read more about electric vehicles from CNBC Pro

Republicans have spoken out against tax incentives for buying electric vehicles that are union-made.

The optimized legislation that is part of President. is Joe BidenThe $ 1.75 trillion social and climate spending package would give the electric vehicle market a significant boost. According to industry forecasts, EV sales this year are expected to represent less than 4% of US sales.

Democrats want to finalize negotiations on the president’s Build Back Better plan this week. The House could vote in the next few days on the invoice.

Ecosia launches World Fund to again local weather tech founders

KONYA, TURKEY – SEPTEMBER 13: Rows of solar panels are seen on a Tekno Ray solar farm on September 13, 2018 in Konya, Turkey. By 2023, Turkey wants to generate 30 percent of its electricity from renewable sources in order to reduce its dependence on energy imports from Iran, Russia and Iraq. Due to its geographical location, Turkey has the second largest solar energy potential in Europe with an average of 7.2 hours of sunshine per day. (Photo by Chris McGrath / Getty Images)

Chris McGrath | Getty Images

Ecosia, the search engine that uses its advertising revenue to plant trees, has launched a € 350 million ($ 405 million) venture capital fund to focus on the climate crisis.

The so-called World Fund will invest in the “next generation” of founders who want to tackle the problem, Ecosia said, and measure its success in terms of “climate returns” as well as financial returns.

“Our goal is to solve climate change,” Christian Kroll, CEO of Ecosia, told CNBC before the start on Tuesday, just days before the COP26 climate summit.

“We have been doing that at Ecosia for a long time by planting trees,” said Kroll, adding that the company has planted 136 million trees to date. “But that alone will not be enough to solve climate change.”

research published Tuesday shows that climate technology startups have raised more money so far this year than any other year, and as of early 2021, $ 32 billion has been pumped into startups fighting climate change around the world.

The search engine Ecosia has 15 million monthly active users and expects annual sales of 25 million euros (29 million US dollars) this year. However, the size of its user base pales in comparison to Google, which has billions of users.

Kroll said Ecosia is “extremely well connected to many start-ups in the air conditioning sector,” but could not support them with the money it makes through its search engine.

“Our promise to our users is that if they look to us, we will use the money to plant trees,” he said. “If we were to put that in risky start-ups and then it didn’t work out, it wouldn’t go down so well.”

He hopes that setting up a separate VC fund that will raise capital from alternative sources will help eliminate this problem.

Bill Gates, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft, said in an interview that aired on Wednesday: Climate Tech will produce eight to ten Teslas, one Google, one Amazon and one Microsoft. The people at Ecosia takes a similar view and believes that the most valuable companies of the next decade will be those that enable a decarbonized world.

Reduce CO2 emissions

More than half of the funding for the World Fund has already been provided by entrepreneurs and large institutions, Ecosia said, adding that the fund has made three investments that are yet to be announced.

“We have invested in a vegetable meat company that is revolutionizing the high end of the market and a cocoa substitute that is reducing deforestation,” said Danijel Visevic, head of investments at Ecosia and head of the World Fund.

The World Fund supports around 40 companies in their early and growth phases.

An important caveat is that every company in which the World Fund invests must contribute to a significant reduction in carbon emissions. In particular, the fund only invests in companies that have the potential to remove 100 megatons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere each year.

“Everything comes back to that number, regardless of technology,” World Fund partner Craig Douglas told CNBC.

The World Fund said it would support carbon-reducing companies in areas such as food and agriculture, transportation and the “built environment”.

Ecosia claims the World Fund is the largest of its kind in Europe, while the largest in the world is operated by Gates’ Breakthrough Ventures and is worth $ 2 billion.

Global VC investment in climate technology has grown from $ 6.6 billion in 2016 to $ 32.3 billion in 2021, according to a report by advertising agency London & Partners and VC analytics firm Dealroom.co means an almost five fold increase in funding.

The VC industry has traditionally been reluctant to invest in air conditioning startups, but Dara Saharova, a General Partner with the World Fund, said companies in the sector established between 2008 and 2013 now have a market capitalization of around $ 800 billion .

“There are a lot of people in Europe who are investing $ 1 million to $ 5 million and there are now some large institutions willing to invest more than $ 30 million per company,” said Douglas. “But there is practically no one in between.” He added that the World Fund was created to fill the void.

Biden unveils plan to handle local weather change dangers to financial system

United States President Joe Biden delivers September vacancy remarks in the South Court Auditorium in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, DC on October 8, 2021.

Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

The Biden government on Friday unveiled a government-wide plan to address the systemic threat climate change poses to all economic sectors.

The roadmap is part of the longer term agenda of the White House to cut domestic greenhouse gas emissions by almost half by 2030 and transition to a net zero emissions economy by mid-century while mitigating the effects of climate change on the economy.

Increasing climate-related disasters such as heat waves, droughts, floods and forest fires threaten the stability of the global financial system.

Extreme weather events this year Affected 1 in 3 Americans, according to federal disaster statements and interrupted supply chains across the country. Extreme weather for the past five years cost Americans According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, more than $ 600 billion in damage.

The government’s plan takes into account how climate change is affecting the businesses people invest in and aims to protect the savings and pensions of American families with retirement plans. Climate-related risks in retirement plans have cost US retirees billions in lost retirement funds, according to a White House leaflet.

The Department of Labor “is making efforts to remove regulatory barriers and ensure that benefit plan trustees can incorporate material climate-related risks into their investment decisions,” the report said. “These efforts will better protect the savings of American workers and their families from the effects of climate change and could also mobilize capital for sustainable investment.”

The roadmap also shows how authorities can strengthen infrastructure resilience in response to worsening climate disasters. It shows how authorities can use federal procurement to address climate-related financial risks and incorporate climate-related risks into federal lending and budget planning.

This month, more than 20 federal agencies did published climate adaptation plans Identify the greatest threats climate change poses to your businesses and facilities and how you intend to deal with them.

“Climate change poses a risk to our economy as well as to the lives and livelihoods of Americans, and we must act now,” said national climate advisor Gina McCarthy on Thursday during a press briefing. “This roadmap isn’t just about protecting our financial system – it’s about protecting people, their paychecks and their wealth.”

“We have a clear focus on how climate change poses a systemic risk to our economy,” said Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, Bharat Ramamurti, at the press conference. “We take a precautionary approach that recognizes that inaction is not an option.”

The report is entitled “A Roadmap to Build a Climate-Resilient Economy”.

President Joe Biden has also called on the Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, the head of the Board of Directors for Financial Stability and financial regulators to report on financial climate risk data. This report has not yet been published.

The President and the First Lady are traveling to Europe in two weeks, with the global climate crisis in the foreground of Biden’s agenda. Biden will also be traveling to Glasgow, Scotland, to attend the Parties’ UN Climate Change Conference, or COP26, in early November.

Protection Division warns local weather change will enhance conflicts

Troops from three California National Guard companies search a fire-ravaged neighborhood in Santa Rosa, California on October 14, 2017.

David McNew | Getty Images

Climate change poses a serious threat to US military operations and will create new sources of global political conflict, the Department of Defense wrote in its new Climate adaptation plan in this week.

Water scarcity could become a major source of friction or conflict between the US military overseas and the countries where troops are stationed, the department warned. She also expects that political efforts to curb food and water scarcity will lead to more frequent physical and cyber terrorist attacks by unknown third parties.

Extreme weather events aggravated by climate change, including droughts, storms and floods, have already cost the ministry billions of dollars, according to plan. An increase in extreme weather events will increase the demand for US troops while damaging military bases, compromising operational capabilities, and endangering soldiers.

Countries that endure conflict are disproportionately exposed to climate change. More than a dozen nations threatened by global warming are also embroiled in conflict. according to an index from the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Initiative. The combination exacerbates food and economic insecurity and weakens the ability of governments to provide assistance, the International Committee of the Red Cross said in a recent report.

“Climate change is an existential threat to our nation’s security and the Department of Defense must act quickly and boldly to meet this challenge and prepare for harm that cannot be avoided,” said Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin. said in a statement.

“Our armed forces struggle every day with the severe and growing consequences of climate change, from hurricanes and forest fires that cause costly damage to US facilities and limit our ability to train and operate, to dangerous heat, drought and floods that can and do trigger crises Instability all over the world, “he said.

Troops, military facilities in danger

The Department of Defense was among the 20 federal agencies that Climate adaptation plans presented this week, exposing the greatest global warming threats to their operations and facilities and making suggestions on how to deal with them.

Shortly after taking office, President Joe Biden gave the authorities four months to develop plans as part of a nationwide approach to tackling climate change. The main themes in all plans include protecting workers from extreme heat events and strengthening supply chains against extreme weather conditions.

Climate change has made troop safety an important issue. Have at least 17 troops died of exposure to heat while exercising at U.S. military bases since 2008says the Pentagon.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin testifies to the House Armed Services Committee on the completion of military operations in Afghanistan at the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, September 29, 2021.

Olivier Douliery | Swimming pool | Reuters

Training troops to operate in increasingly extreme weather conditions could also give the US a distinct advantage over its enemies, as “forces can operate in conditions where others seek protection or go down,” according to the plan.

The department said it has committed to using climate information to educate military planners about where and how military assets are at risk. It was recently released as a Climate assessment tool creates hazard indicators based on data from past extreme weather events and the effects of future sea level changes, floods, droughts, heat, soil degradation, energy demands and forest fires.

“We must take on these challenges as a team – from every corner of the Pentagon, on every one of our installations and bases, across the federal government, and together with our partners and allies,” said Austin.

‘Robust’ to satisfy local weather finance targets forward of COP26, Johnson says

September 19, 2021: Prime Minister Boris Johnson climbs aboard the RAF Voyager at Stansted Airport prior to a visit to the United States.

Stefan Rousseau – PA Pictures | PA pictures | Getty Images

There is a six-in-ten chance of reaching an agreement on climate finance ahead of the upcoming COP26 climate change summit, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said.

In remarks to the media during his trip to New York over the weekend, Johnson was asked if he had any commitments related to climate finance as well according to the BBC, Environmental goals in the next few days.

“Getting everything ready this week will be a chore,” he is reported to have said. “But I think it’s all done by the COP, six out of 10. It’s going to be tough, but people need to understand that this is vital to the world.”

Financial discussions will be a key part of COP26, which will be held from October 31st to November 12th in the UK’s Scottish city of Glasgow.

According to the United Nations, the industrialized nations had previously announced that they would “collectively mobilize 100 billion US dollars per year by 2020 to support climate protection in developing countries”.

This goal is proving to be a challenge. Last week, the OECD said that climate finance provided and mobilized by developed countries amounted to $ 79.6 billion in 2019. This is an increase from $ 78.3 billion in 2018, but is still below the $ 100 billion.

“The limited progress in the total volume of climate finance between 2018 and 2019 is disappointing, especially before COP26,” said Mathias Cormann, Secretary General of the OECD, in a statement on the figures.

“Even if appropriately verified data for 2020 will not be available until the beginning of next year, it is clear that climate finance is lagging far behind its target,” said Cormann. “More needs to be done.”

Johnson’s remarks were made public by a number of media outlets, and the BBC aired an excerpt from the discussion on Monday morning. Johnson said Britain made a “big, big promise” and “cut our carbon a lot,” but it needs other countries to get going.

“We’ve been issuing for centuries and these emerging economies are saying, ‘Well why should we pay such a high price?’ The 100 billion US dollars that we have to raise each year are therefore used to support these countries [to] make the transition. ”

The UK’s official website for COP26 states that it will “bring parties together to accelerate action to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change”.

Described by the United Nations as a legally binding international treaty on climate change, the Paris Agreement aims to “limit global warming to well below 2, preferably 1.5 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels”.

On Monday, Johnson and UN Secretary General António Guterres will hold an “informal round table of heads of state and government on climate protection”.

Houston may obtain federal cash to struggle local weather change disasters

President Joe Biden recently announced that Texas would be preserved $ 666 million for preventive measures to combat the effects of climate change, which include the increasing frequency and severity of hurricanes that have devastated the Gulf Coast in recent years, according to Christopher Flavelle of the New York Times.

The Hurricane Harvey floods were among the worst Houston had ever seen.

Brett Coomer, contributor / Houston Chronicle

The money comes from the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Disaster Fund, which typically spends 15 percent on “hazard mitigation” grants. That usually equates to about $ 1 billion in total, but with an increased FEMA budget due to COVID-19, the figure will be $ 3.5 billion in 2021.

Texas’ expected $ 666 million share of the $ 3.5 billion pie is the largest of any state. But that doesn’t guarantee Houston or Harris County will get the money, and it’s unclear who will make decisions about how it will be distributed in the state.

Will be great when Harris County only ends up 0.1% of that or something. https://t.co/dhxubXB7KP

– Matt Lanza (@mattlanza) August 6, 2021

In May, both the city and the county were denied more than $ 2 billion in funds channeled to Texas by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

That was after Governor Greg Abbott ordered the Texas General Land Office, under the direction of governor hopeful George P. Bush, to distribute the money. (Spoiler alert: they did.)

George P. Bush heads the Texas General Land Office, which declined funding to Houston and Harris Counties for flood projects earlier this year.

Thao Nguyen, contributor

Bush later promised to secure $ 750 million from the HUD for Houston and Harris Counties, but it appears to be just his word. He had not asked about the additional funds as of May, according to Zach Despart of the Houston Chronicle.

It is unlikely that Abbott, who is seeking re-election, would allow a political opponent to redeem his word. So you shouldn’t expect the GLO to distribute the $ 666 million in FEMA dollars this round.

If Houston is lucky, we will at least get some federal government funding for much-needed flood projects. But don’t hold your breath.

How local weather change is impacting millennials’ cash choices

When Millennials turned 40 in 2021, CNBC Make It was launched Medieval millennialsA series that examines how the oldest members of this generation grew up against the backdrop of the Great Recession and the Covid-19 pandemic, student loans, stagnating wages and the rising cost of living.

About five years ago, unsatisfied with the life they had spent “chasing the dollar”, Kelli and Charlie Compton quit their jobs as salon owners and managers at an equipment rental in North Carolina, sold most of their belongings, and set off the open road in an Airstream trailer.

Kelli, 35) and Charlie, 36, who work as seasonal camping hosts in locations in California, Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, and other states, have come to understand how climate change is disrupting various types of ecosystems and habitats in California The past few years and the Rocky Mountain National Park area in 2020 have been particularly devastating to them, according to Kelli, and have “brought climate change to the fore”.

As a result, they are doing as much as possible to minimize their carbon footprint, Kelli told CNBC Make It. This includes cooking most meals, wearing clothes, and using a composting toilet that doesn’t require water to flush in her 30 foot trailer. The couple decided not to have children due to climatic reasons. “The earth groans,” she says.

They’re making significantly less money now – they raised around $ 40,000 last year compared to $ 150,000 in their previous life, Kelli says – but they’re happier, healthier, and comfortable on their new income because of you current lifestyle requires less of everything. The couple originally intended to be out for a year. Now they have no intention of going back.

“We didn’t necessarily get into this lifestyle because we wanted to be responsible citizens of the world,” she says. “But now, when we look at our carbon footprint, we can really be proud of it.”

Kelli Compton, 35, stands in her Airstream RV in Wyoming.

Courtesy of Kelli Compton

The Comptons are an extreme example – few people are willing to reshape their entire lives to reduce their carbon footprint – but experts say that climate change increasingly affects millennials’ financial decisions as they move into middle age approach.

Around 76% of older millennials between the ages of 33 and 40 believe that climate change is a serious threat to society. This is based on a survey The Harris Poll conducted in March on behalf of CNBC Make It, in which 1,000 US adults were asked about various topics.

Many members of the generation grew up watching Climate change as an existential threatto worry about something global sea level riseand give testimony an ecological disaster Successively. Now that they are settling into careers and family life, climate concerns are affecting how they spend their money, from investing to buying homes to the products they use and the companies that support them.

Carrying a “transitional burden”

Climate change is a hot topic Millennials are considering when to choose investments or buy real estate, says Dann Ryan, a certified financial planner at Real advice in New York City advising millennial clients. It can affect small habits, such as consume less or Prefer sustainable brandsand big life choices like whether to have children or not, he says.

At 35, Ryan is an older millennial himself and says he and other members of his generation are doubling sustainability “because we have to”.

Ryan describes millennials as a “transitional burden” between the unsustainable habits of baby boomers and Gen X, such as increased consumption, and the more socially and environmentally conscious Gen Z. Older millennials believe they have to atone for the mistakes of previous generations while saying the Pointing the way for the next generation and creating a sustainable future for you and your children.

My customers come from humble backgrounds and feel this burden from their newly gained wealth. You feel obliged to do something with it for society.

Then Ryan

certified financial planner

“My clients come from humble backgrounds and feel the strain from their newfound wealth,” says Ryan. “They feel obliged to do something with it for society,” for example investing in companies that take measures to reduce their environmental impact.

Jovan Johnson, Certified Financial Planner at Piece of wealth planning in Atlanta, agrees. His millennial customers are particularly interested in sustainable investments, solar power for their homes, and even tax credits for electric cars, he says. These issues are less of a concern with older customers approaching retirement.

“Younger customers want to make a difference,” says Johnson. They seem to feel more acutely than older generations that what they do affects their children and grandchildren, he adds.

And now that more millennials are parents, Johnson says they’re thinking more about the future. That makes all of their financial decisions more weighty: it seems like the way they spend their money is an indication of what the future of the planet should look like. “People realize that their dollars make a difference,” says Johnson.

The concern for these issues is “more of.” [millennials’] Legacy than other generations, “added Harlin Singh, director of sustainable investments at Citi Private Bank, on both a moral and practical level Insurance costs to Food and energy pricesClimate change is already affecting certain aspects of millennial lives, says Singh.

“The reality is that millennials are 40 years old and will be here for 40 to 60 years. They are always concerned about what is going on in your life,” says Singh. Millennials expect this to happen financial impact of climate change events like rising sea levels in their lifetimes.

Kelli Compton doesn’t indulge anyone who makes more traditional career and housing choices. The Airstream lifestyle is not for everyone. At the same time, there are simple things that everyone can do to reduce their carbon footprint, such as buying fewer new things overall. And in her experience, at least, these changes made her and her husband happier overall.

“Does my only composting toilet change the world? No, it doesn’t. Do I feel like I need to make changes where I can? I do,” she says. “Making less money and living on a smaller carbon footprint is a solution for our family.”

CNBC Make It will publish more stories about student loan, employment, wealth, diversity and health in the Millennials of the Middle Ages series. If you are an older millennial (ages 33 to 40), sHare your story with us for a chance to be featured in a future episode.

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Check out: Meet the Middle Aged Millennial: Homeowners, In Debt, and 40 Years Old

Singapore faces ‘twin challenges’ from local weather change, says minister

SINGAPORE – Singapore faces two challenges from climate change and is pursuing a new coastal protection plan to preserve the island’s most vulnerable coastlines, the country’s environment minister said.

“Our dual challenges are coastal flooding … (and) extreme rainstorms, which can lead to more intense inland flooding. So we need a system that will help us address both issues,” said Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the environment.

The project, launched Tuesday by Singapore’s national water agency PUB, will collect science and data on how best to mitigate and adjust coastal damage before creating a road map, Fu told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Wednesday .

Singapore, a small Southeast Asian city-state smaller than New York City, has worked for years to protect its coastline from sea level rise and other environmental damage.

Much of the land is fair 15 meters above mean sea levelwith about 30% of the land less than 5 meters above mean sea level. This has prompted authorities to introduce a minimum land reclamation of 4 meters – a number that would likely soon increase to 5 meters, Fu said.

“We want to understand the effects of all of these climate scenarios on our environment, sea water levels and also the tidal differences that are coming our way,” she said.

The first region to fall under the plan will be 57.8 km of coastline stretching across Singapore’s Greater South Waterfront. These include the city’s central business district, the east coast and Changi, which is where Singapore’s Changi Airport is located.

The skyline of the financial and business center can be seen in the background as people paddle along the beach at East Coast Park in Singapore on July 17, 2020.

Facebook Facebook Logo Log in to Facebook to connect with Roslan Rahman AFP | Getty Images

Singapore’s new coastal defense strategy gives private developers an opportunity to help shape their future, Fu said.

The study starts with a $ 5 billion fund and will be carried out over the next four years by a privately owned consortium of Singaporean and Dutch consulting firms. This process will in turn open the door for other private companies to offer green solutions, Fu said.

“For the investments that the government is making, I am sure that the private sector can benefit from building and delivering the tech solutions,” she said.

“Developers along the way will have an idea of ​​the plan we are pursuing,” she said. “So if you build infrastructure, if you build buildings, if you build offices, or if you build recreational facilities, you have to build with this science, this data and these assumptions.”

The project takes place amid increasing efforts to reduce the effects of climate change around the world.

The Indo-Pacific Does not Simply Want Cash to Cope With Local weather Change. It Wants a Full Plan.

April 28, 2021, 10:14 a.m.

Last week, US President Joe Biden convened 40 heads of state for a virtual climate summit of heads of state and government. In addition to the notable attendance of Vladimir Putin from Russia and Xi Jinping from China, the guest list also included a strong list of Indo-Pacific countries. Biden was joined by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina from Bangladesh, Prime Minister Lotay Tshering from Bhutan and Secretary General Nguyen Phu Trong from Vietnam.

As part of the United States’ official re-entry into the global climate dialogue, Biden discussed ways to strengthen global capacities to protect nations from the effects of climate change, address the global security threats posed by climate change, and possible solutions to achieve net zero emissions by up to 2050.

Biden’s invitation to the Indo-Pacific states particularly reflects their risk status. The region is warming up rapidly and weather extremes are already displacing communities and increasing conflicts over resources. The situation is ripe for violence and if the region is not adapted to climate change it risks becoming a breeding ground for major security threats.

That’s probably why, on the first day of the dialogue, Biden announced his administration’s efforts to double US public climate finance for developing countries by 2024, and pointed out the urgent need to increase money for adaptation and resilience in those countries . The success of US climate policy depends on Biden’s ability to implement these plans.

If he’s serious, he needs a great strategy that includes climate change, alliances and a growing challenge from the great power in the Indo-Pacific. Although US-led international institutions are burdened by the arbitrary approach of the previous administration, they can once again serve as levers for the intertwining challenges of poverty, climate change and pandemic global insecurity.

This brings us to the question of how Biden’s climate ambition can be turned into a great strategy for the region.

For inspiration he could look to the US Marshall Plan in Western Europe after the devastation of World War II. The courageous strategy, which provided more than $ 15 billion to rebuild the continent, is widely accepted as the catalyst for the birth of NATO and for strengthening the United States’ alliance with European countries. The Marshall Plan helped rehabilitate the economies of 16 European countries and promoted stable conditions in which democratic institutions could flourish.

A similarly bold strategy in the Indo-Pacific region could have profound and lasting effects. As in 1947, when the Economic Cooperation Administration, a predecessor of the US Agency for International Development, jointly administered the Marshall Plan with the Committee on European Economic Cooperation, Biden must lead the newly formed US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) its lending capacity of USD 60 billion to regions in the direct crosshairs of poverty, insecurity and climate change.

For the Marshall Plan, the Committee on European Economic Cooperation was a joint European conference that set priorities for the post-war recovery of the European economy. It consisted of delegates from 16 European nations and met in Paris. This committee later established the Organization for European Economic Cooperation, which allowed countries to control the administration and distribution of Marshall funds themselves.

For robust climate protection measures, active regional cooperation organizations like the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, as well as dying organizations like the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, are likely partners. In addition to the DFC, a committee of the Indo-Pacific states could help set the priorities for a climate strategy and support the management of US climate investments. A bold strategy would increase the municipal capacity of nations to provide essential services and expand investment in response systems and climate disaster prevention.

Together, the United States and a group of Indo-Pacific nations could do a great deal of good. Establishing a platform for others to join will encourage greater international cooperation. The so-called Annex II states within the meaning of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change can use such a mechanism to meet their own financial responsibility. In the meantime, initiatives such as the Green Climate Fund and a proposal to link debt relief with investing in climate change at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund should be fully implemented. And the G-20 must take into account the central role of climate change in their deliberations. A newly designed trans-Pacific partnership could also focus on investing in climate change as part of regional trade.

Consistent with the success of the United States in Europe in the mid-twentieth century, an Indo-Pacific climate strategy will promote and sustain US leadership while promoting critical alliances in the region. China currently has massive economic influence in the region. From infrastructure projects to threats restricting access to Chinese markets, China is using its tools in the region to compete with the US. And if Washington is committed to diplomacy in the Indo-Pacific, Biden must cultivate deeper ties there beyond Japan and India to include marginalized nations such as Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Vietnam, backed by a robust economic strategy.

The then British Prime Minister Winston Churchill described the decision of the US Secretary of State George Marshall to rebuild Europe as “the highest level of statecraft”. By investing in the future of Europe, the United States helped lay the foundations that enabled the European Union to become one of the largest global economies and a political force in the international order. Addressing the needs of the nations most vulnerable to the effects of climate change will be a similar act of statecraft for US foreign policy in the 21st century.