P 1.7 billion climate change fund behind GMA call for aid in Asian green summit

P 1.7 billion climate change fund behind GMA call for aid in Asian green summit

The activist fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) on Friday said the ambitious P 1.7 billion climate change fund being set up by the government is the hidden agenda why President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo asked rich countries to support developing countries to combat global warming.

Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap said President Arroyo used the occasion of the three-day summit billed as International Conference on Green Industry in Asia (ICGIA)to kick off her campaign for fund sourcing for a bogus climate change advocacy.

“Mrs. Arroyo is advocating climate money, not climate justice here. This massive fund generation campaign is all for bureaucratic corruption and wholesale sellout of national patrimony and the national dismissal of cases of climate change crimes against transnational interests,” said Hicap.

In her speech, President Arroyo on Friday pressed developed countries to provide financial support for developing states to combat climate change.

”We also call on them to assist developing countries to mitigate and adapt to worsening changes in climate by fulfilling their treaty obligations to provide technological and financial support, including support for green industry,” she said in a speech at the close of the International Conference on Green Industry in Asia at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City.

Pamalakaya recalled that since last year, Malacanang has been eager to tap foreign funding from big banks abroad to finance its P 1.7-billion climate change credit facility fund

The group said the project was meant to impress foreign banks and big time perpetrators of climate change that her government is willing to join the bandwagon and collaborate in the cover up process that would absolve transnational polluting firms from their crimes against humanity and against the environment.

“President Arroyo sees the worldwide campaign against global warming as a current source of foreign assistance from centers of capitalism and financial oligarchs,” Pamalakaya said.

The group said the government found a goldmine in climate change advocacy, upon learning that the World Bank and “capitalist exploiting nations are willing to fund the advocacy against global warming.”

Pamalakaya also said the credit facility fund, aside from impressing foreign aid donors, will also allow pro-Arroyo administration politicians , local government officials and Palace-created and Palace-backed non-government organizations to partake in the P1.7 billion worth of taxpayers money.

The Arroyo government approved the creation of a P1.721-billion fund that would be used as a credit line facility for projects aimed at promoting energy efficiency, conservation and climate protection.

The measure was presented and approved during the NEDA board meeting last year, which was presided by President Arroyo.

According to NEDA, the credit facility is established to entertain requests and project proposals that would help protect the environment, provide energy efficiency, promote conservation, minimize the greenhouse effect.

The credit facility fund will begin on 2009 and will run until 2012. Malacaňang said the Land Bank of the Philippines would put up its counterpart fund of P344.29 million, while the rest or about P1.377 billion would be provided by the German bank KfW Bankengruppe, and other potential donors.

The fund would be used for programs aimed at managing the demand and consumption of primary energyin the country as well as those that will lower the greenhouse gas emissions.

The LandBank said potential clients of the loan facility are those involved in program that would “lower annual carbon dioxide emissions equivalent by about 24 million tons through energy efficiency measures and direct emission reduction projects.”

The government-run bank also said the loan would be available for projects that are nationwide in scope, while 50 percent of the credit line would be made available for Visayas and Mindanao.

Such projects include: retrofitting, replacement, and/or upgrading of existing equipment to more energy
efficient and environmentally friendly equipment and those that would promote more energy savings. #

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