He World Bank Group has continued to invest in fossil fuels despite to have committed to fighting climate changeaccording to the German environmental lobby Urgewald, which said the entity has spent more than $ 2 billion on projects in the past two years.
The bank has spent more than $ 12 billion on such projects since the Paris Agreement to combat global warming was adopted in 2015, roughly the same amount it spent on fossil fuels between 2014 and 2018, according to a study by Urgewald. The information, which Urgewald updates annually, was compiled from data from the World Bank and its contact with companies, projects and governments that received the funds.
The last count Urgewald did on World Bank spending on fossil fuels It showed that most of the money invested in the last five years – US $ 10.5 billion – corresponds to new direct financing of projects, including new loans, guarantees and equity.
The World Bank said in a statement that it stopped financing upstream investments in oil and gas in 2019, but continues to assist “resource-dependent developing countries” with “advice on energy solutions that are economically viable ”.
“Reliable energy services are key to prevent and combat covid-19 “, he pointed. “We are working with governments, the private sector and other partners to reuse and accelerate energy operations to provide clean, reliable and affordable energy to hospitals and other major healthcare facilities.”
Financial institutions around the world are focusing on supporting renewable energy projects to reduce carbon emissions and slow global warming. Researchers from the United Nations Environment Program revealed that the world is currently heading to exploit 120% more fossil fuels by 2030 than is compatible with the Paris Agreement goal of maintaining the average rise in global temperatures by below 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Urgewald’s study was released ahead of the World Bank Group’s 2020 Annual Meetings, which kick off Monday. The bank has said that without the implementation of urgent measures to mitigate the effects of global warming, climate change will drive more than 100 million people into poverty by 2030. But the institution is “a big part of the problem,” he noted. Urgewald in a statement.
“The new report with updated data shows that the bank has not reduced its support for fossil fuels,” said Heike Mainhardt, senior adviser for multilateral development banks in Urgewald. “They promised to help countries make the energy transition, but what they are really doing is helping the expansion of fossil fuels.”
Urgewald cited as examples the following projects recently supported by the World Bank:
- In May 2020, the bank approved an additional US $ 38 million to continue a technical assistance program that supports oil and gas production in Brazil.
- It delivered US $ 20 million in March 2019 for the Guyana Petroleum Resources Management and Governance Project and its assistance project is scheduled to last until at least April 2021.