Australia will contribute $200 million to a global fund to help poorer nations tackle climate change.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop announced the move at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru.
The money, which will be paid over four years from Australia’s foreign aid budget, will go to the UN’s Green Climate Fund, which aims to fund projects in poorer countries.
“Our pledge to the Green Climate Fund will facilitate private sector-led economic growth in our region … with a particular focus on investment, infrastructure, energy, forestry and emissions reductions,” Ms Bishop told the conference.
“I welcome the fact that participating countries have delivered on undertakings to capitalise the Green Climate fund and with Australia’s contribution have reached a significant total in excess of $10 billion to date.
“It is now contingent on all of us to make sure the Green Climate Fund funds are distributed efficiently, transparently and to maximum effect.”
Speaking at a Melbourne hospital on Wednesday, Prime Minister Tony Abbott described the contribution as “prudent and proportionate”.
“We will be making what I think is a prudent and proportionate contribution to be strictly invested in practical projects in our region,” Mr Abbott told reporters.
“We are one of the few countries to meet our Kyoto targets and to deliver on our 20/20 commitments of a 12 per cent reduction in 2005 emissions levels,” he added.
— with ABC and AAP