US Senate Approves $500m Green Fund for Developing Countries
The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee adopted a $500 million spending package for the Green Climate Fund late last week before Senators departed for the July 4th recess. The Green Climate Fund is a fund within the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change founded as a mechanism to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change.
According to The Hill, members approved the funding, via an amendment from Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and others, on a voice vote, despite strong opposition to the measure. The amendment removed a prohibition on funding to the fund and also provided $500 million in 2017 for the fund.
In November 2015, 1,200 participants of the Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice visited legislators Capitol Hill offices to call Green Climate Fund funding to address the needs of the 3 billion people most at risk to the consequences of climate change. This group of high school and college students from across the country joined many Catholic advocates in calling on Congress to enact funding, responding to the strong messages of Pope Francis’s encyclical Laudato Si’, which recently celebrated its first anniversary.