The World Bank's Approach to Clean Energy & Climate Change
Helping developing countries to move to a lower carbon path by exploiting renewable energy resources, supporting energy conservation, and increasing efficiency. The share of renewable energy and energy efficiency lending by the World Bank Group more than doubled between 1994 and last year, and the Bank's total energy lending is also growing. In the last 4 years it has increased from $1.5 billion to $2.5 billion per year in response to growing demands. 19 percent of the World Bank Group's energy portfolio is in alternative energy, compared to 4 percent in 1990.
Promoting new technologies. Some of those, like carbon capture and storage (CCS), address the need to reduce the carbon impact of fossil fuels. They are essential in countries like India and China that still depend heavily on coal. As part of its broader work on bio-energy, The Bank is looking at the feasibility and economic viability of bio-fuel programs in developing countries.
Preventing deforestation. Around 20 percent of greenhouse gas emissions result from poor land management, especially deforestation, which not only threatens the environment it also destroys wildlife and erodes the natural wealth of the poor. Together with its partners, the World Bank is developing a forest carbon facility that will help countries combat deforestation and be rewarded with carbon finance credits.
Adaptation to climate risks. Developing countries and particularly the world poorest people would be the ones most harmed by changes of climate and extreme weather events such as floods, droughts, heat waves, and rising sea levels. The World Bank was among the leaders in addressing adaptation to climate risk by pioneering insurance work in the Caribbean, in Latin America, and in South Asia. The challenge now is to replicate these lessons more widely, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Pacific Islands.
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