Quebec announces support for Least Developed Countries Fund
During the COP21 climate negotiations last week in Paris, the Premier of Quebec, Philippe Couillard (pictured above), announced a contribution of US$4.5 million to the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), the Global Environment Facility-hosted climate fund for the most vulnerable countries. The commitment is the first-ever by a sub-national government, and brings total new financing to the LDCF to more than US$252 million. “This commitment by Quebec shows the growing international cooperation to help the most vulnerable and most exposed to the impacts of climate change,” said Naoko Ishii, CEO and Chairperson of the Global Environment Facility, in thanking Quebec for its support. The support for the Least Developed Countries Fund was included in an announcement by the Quebec government of new international funding for climate cooperation, totalling US$19 million, to support actions to fight climate change in Francophone countries that are the most vulnerable and most exposed to the consequences of climate change. Spread over five years, the assistance consists of three measures. With a budget of US$19 million, the first measure will involve a call for projects to support cooperation projects among academic, research and international cooperation entities in Quebec and their southern partners. These projects will capitalise on Quebec’s expertise, especially in the areas of clean technology, energy, and adaptation to the impacts of climate change. “By contributing to the Least Developed Countries Fund, Quebec, as a federated state, is setting a precedent in international climate funding,” said Premier Couillard. “This new gesture is yet another demonstration of the essential contribution of federated states in the fight against climate change and Quebec’s leadership in this area.” Eleven donor countries have already pledged US$248 million to the LDCF, which will enable the Global Environment Facility to respond to existing requests for support ranging from investments in new approaches to agriculture to national adaptation planning and building resilience against climate change variability and disasters. “Given that we’re already locked into climate change trajectories for many years to come, increased investment in adaptation has to be at the core of the new climate agreement,” added Ishii.
By Nick Michell
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Photo: Parti Libéral Québec