MANILA, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- By 2020, the amount of funding to support the fight against climate change will double to $6 billion, the president of the Asian Development Bank said.
World leaders gathering in New York this weekend are expected to announce commitments to more than a dozen sustainable development goals. With China, a world emissions leader, planning to lead the announcements, ADB President Takehiko Nakao said the growing Asian economies have a major role to play in the fight against climate change.
"Nowhere is tackling climate change more critical than in Asia and the Pacific, where rising sea levels, melting glaciers, and weather extremes like floods and droughts are damaging livelihoods and taking far too many lives," he said in a statement.
Nakao said spending on climate change by 2020 will be $6 billion, which will represent about 30 percent of its overall financing.
The ADB since 2011 has approved $2 billion in loans to China to help fund energy efficiency and other low-carbon programs. The latest funding announcement comes ahead of pledges by developed economies to mobilize $100 million each year by 2020 to combat issues tied to climate change in developing countries.
Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune said diplomatic outreach from Washington was in part behind Asian pivots to a low-carbon economy.
"When China makes a solid commitment to take new action to reduce climate disruption and increase clean energy, it's a big deal for everyone on this planet," he said in a statement.
China has already set a goal of reducing emissions by up to 65 percent of their current levels by 2030.