U.S. Global Change Research Program’s recent report analyzing the health impacts of climate change found that certain populations are “disproportionately vulnerable.” On April 7, 2016 the World Bank Group issued its own Climate Change Action Plan, weighing in on the impact of climate change on extreme poverty.
The plan notes that poor people are more vulnerable and less able to adapt to climate shocks and that certain groups—such as those without access to basic infrastructure, children, women, the elderly, indigenous populations, refugees, migrants, and those living on small islands and deltas—are extremely vulnerable to climate change-related risks. As a result, the World Bank Group concludes that climate change is a threat to its core mission of ending extreme poverty and increasing shared prosperity in a sustainable manner.
The World Bank Group’s Climate Change Action Plan details the actions the World Bank Group intends to undertake to help countries and companies address climate risks and opportunities. It is broken down into four priorities:
- Support Transformational Policies & Institutions – The World Bank Group plans to encourage the transformation of policies and institutions in order to increase the focus on development and climate agendas, particularly for the poorest and most vulnerable.
- Leverage Resources – The plan aims to facilitate greater private capital investment in resilient and low-carbon projects in countries that are World Bank Group borrowers. By 2020, the plan seeks to mobilize at least $13 billion per year in private sector investments.
- Scale Up World Bank Climate Action – The World Bank Group intends to increase its investments with climate co-benefits, which are projects that contribute to either mitigation (such as reducing GHG emissions) or adaptation. By 2020, it plans to have at least 28% of its operations generate climate co-benefits.
- Strengthen Partnerships – Finally, the plan emphasizes coordination with client countries on issues relating to climate change. In particular, the World Bank Group expects to help countries implement their Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Climate Agreement.