Wednesday, November 21, 2012

GEF Advised Not to Fund SRM, Support Possible for CDR

The Global Environment Facility (GEF), the world's largest environmental funding body, has been advised by its Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) to refrain from supporting SRM geoengineering projects, but that some CDR technologies such as BECCS and biochar may warrant funding support.  In a newly released advisory document, STAP concludes that,

Overall, it would appear that the GEF should avoid funding SRM projects until the risks and uncertainties are more clearly defined.  The GEF could consider supporting biological atmospheric CO2 removal projects that seem to have lower risk, but only after a greater understanding of costs and barriers from on-going R&D has been established.  Geoengineering may remain a potential option if the crossing of tipping points leading to abrupt climate change occurs, and if all other GHG reduction approaches fail. (p. 56)

If the Facility adopts this as official policy, there will be significant ripple effects across major international financial institutions such as the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and African Development Bank (these and other organizations administer GEF-funded projects).

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