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World Bank president under pressure to resign over climate change allegations

World Bank President David Malpass has accused German and U.S. officials of refusing to say whether he believes in human-caused global warming and complaints about bank records on climate-related finance. He faced mounting pressure to resign after being criticized by and environmental groups.

When asked during Tuesday’s New York Climate Week event whether he accepts the reality of human-caused climate change, Malpass avoided a definite answer three times, finally stating, “I’m not a scientist.”

On Thursday, Malpass tried to turn his remarks around, telling CNN that “it’s clear that greenhouse gas emissions are coming from man-made sources” and he’s “not a denier.”

This followed a barrage of criticism against Malpass that fell below. continuous attack For World Bank records under his leadership.

The bank provides loans and grants to poorer countries and is critical in distributing funds to developing countries to limit global warming as their economies grow. is regarded.

We are the largest multinational provider climate finance, According to OECD data. But it did not join many countries and other development banks that pledged last year to end public financing of coal, oil and gas abroad by the end of 2022. Nor does its climate plan include a deadline to phase out direct and indirect fossil fuels. Financing.

Jochen FraswaldThe State Secretary of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development pointed to UN scientific evidence on global warming. “We are concerned about this confusing signal about the scientific evidence of climate change from the head of the World Bank,” he said Thursday.

Sonia Dunlop, a multilateral development bank expert at independent think tank E3G, said the bank “has not used its institutional status to lead global efforts on climate change.” “They have the ability to really lead the global effort and change the global financial system to help implement the Paris Agreement.

Growing dissatisfaction is likely to put pressure on member countries that are World Bank shareholders. COP27 UN Climate Summit in November. The United States is the largest shareholder and traditionally appoints the World Bank President.

Malpass, 66, was appointed by former US President Donald Trump, whose term is set to end in April 2024.

The US Treasury Department on Thursday said it expected the World Bank to become a “global leader in climate change ambition” and said it would “clarify” the group’s leadership.

Dunlop said other countries are likely to follow suit. “If the Treasury Department and the White House were waiting for an excuse, [to replace Malpass]they have it now.

US special envoy for climate John Kerry did not seek Malpass’s position this week, calling for broader reform of multilateral development banks. He said he had “promoted for months” a review of the international financial institutions established as a result of the Bretton Woods Accords of 1944. world bank group.

With COP27 just a few weeks away, the World Bank is making it difficult for major development banks to produce a joint climate statement that it plans to release at its summit in November, two people familiar with the matter said. rice field. This follows a call by the World Bank last year to shorten and weaken the Joint Development Bank’s statement, as reported by the FT.

The annual joint report by development banks on climate finance, which is usually published in the middle of the year, has not yet been published.

The World Bank Group reported this month that it will provide a record $31.7 billion in 2022 to help countries tackle climate change. This is a 19% increase over the previous year.

“Under the leadership of David Malpass, the World Bank Group has doubled its climate finance, announced an ambitious Climate Change Action Plan, and launched country-level diagnostics to support countries’ climate and development goals.” said Thursday.

However, the level of funding is nowhere near what experts believe needs to be deployed.

Former Vice President Al Gore, who has long called for Malpass’s resignation, called him a “climate change denier” this week. Gore said banks have not intervened adequately to finance the clean energy transition in developing countries.

“With nearly 90% of future emissions growth coming from developing countries, we need to remove the top tier of risk from access to capital in these developing countries,” Gore said. .

“It’s the World Bank’s job to coordinate other multilateral development banks, but they simply aren’t doing it.”

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https://www.ft.com/content/2186a261-50ef-4250-91a7-fea0f95c9d3b World Bank president under pressure to resign over climate change allegations

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