Climate and development cooperation

Developing countries will be the first to feel the impact of climate change, and they will be hit hardest. The climate is therefore a major component of Dutch development cooperation policy.

Why should Dutch development cooperation policy include climate issues?

In developing countries, the poorest people will be worst hit by the impact of climate change. So the Dutch government wants to reach international agreement, for example on reducing CO2 emissions. You will find more information on this subject in the policy document ‘A World to Gain: A New Agenda for Aid, Trade and Investment’.

How is the Netherlands contributing to international climate policy?

Within the framework of development cooperation policy, the Dutch government is targeting the following themes:

  • Mitigation (fewer CO2 emissions)
    The Dutch government supports development programmes that aim to increase developing countries’ access to sustainable energy. It is also committed to preventing deforestation.
  • Adaptation to climate change in developing countries
    The Dutch government is working on development cooperation that also takes climate issues into account, in relation to water and agriculture, for example.

The Netherlands is focusing on the following 5 issues.

  1. The Netherlands is aiming for an international climate agreement to be concluded in 2015.
  2. The Netherlands is including climate as an International Public Good within its development cooperation policy. It is allocating an increasingly larger part of its development budget to climate issues.
  3. The Dutch government plans to enter into partnerships with the business community, civil society organisations and research institutions in order to strengthen public support for its ambitious climate policies.
  4. Many natural disasters are related to climate change. The Netherlands therefore plans to include Disaster Risk Reduction (DDR) in its development cooperation policy. The Dutch government also wants to increase the ability of developing countries to protect themselves. This calls for risk analyses. Through the World Bank’s DDR facility, experts and companies advise developing countries on preventing water-related disasters.
  5. The Netherlands is committed to a climate policy that devotes attention to women’s equality and empowerment, in particular in relation to adaptation. In contributing to international climate funds, the Netherlands calls for a focus on the role of women. They can help find solutions, reach decisions and formulate policy.

Climate finance

Climate finance is investment in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and mitigating the impact of climate change. Climate issues are also linked to water, food and energy. Policy is geared to including climate in these themes. Some of the budget for, for example, water and food security is intended for climate finance.

Under the coalition agreement, international climate finance is funded from the development cooperation budget. The Dutch contribution may rise from €200 million in 2013 to €1.2 billion in 2020, based on a fair share for the Netherlands. The Netherlands wants at least 50% of the contribution to international climate finance to come from private sources. Its aim is to:

  • promote greening of foreign investment;
  • reduce CO2 emissions;
  • keep the burden on the development budget to a minimum.

Climate funds

The Netherlands also contributes money to climate funds, which finance adaptation and mitigation programmes in developing countries. They are: