April 11, 2008
These last two weeks have been quite a rollercoaster ride, outlined by CGD Director of Communications and Policy Lawrence MacDonald in World Bank Clean Technology Fund Would Be Cash Cow for Coal. While World Bank President Bob Zoellick argued last week that "We need to help shift countries to a development paradigm based on low-carbon growth and adaptation to new risks," the bank's actions so far haven't matched the rhetoric. On April 8, the board of the IFC, the bank's private sector arm, approved a $450 million investment in the enormous Tata Ultra Mega coal-fired power plant, and the bank released a proposal for a multi-billion dollar "Clean Technology Fund" that would actually allow it to invest even more in coal power. Of course, it's still just a proposal, and with technology and financing evolving faster than the bank, opposition to this short-sighted proposal is sure to grow.
I'd also like to mention that public information disclosure that is at the heart of CARMA has been crucial to sparking the debate over the Tata plant and the proposed Clean Technology Fund. In our continuing commitment to such disclosure, we're making CARMA more open and easier to use than ever before. Using the Improve Your CARMA widget you can submit plant photos, comments, news and more, or leverage the CARMA programming API and other data sources to do your own data mashups. Send us your creations and discoveries and we'll feature them in this newsletter.
As always, below is a selection of important articles on climate and development from the past two weeks. My thanks to Robin Kraft for his help in preparing this letter.
Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development
Good policies can contain climate change costs: IMF (Reuters UK)
Climate change seen conducive to breeding of more mosquitoes (Philippine Daily Inquirer)
Huge fund for agriculture to cope with climate change (VietnamNet)
Ethiopia: Africa Centre for Climate Change to Be Established Here (AllAfrica.com)
World cooling on biofuel solution to climate change (Agence France Presse)
Climate Change to Hit Beer Production (Forbes)