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ADB commits to full alignment with Paris Agreement

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has announced its commitment to align its operations with the goals of the Paris Agreement.

ADB will achieve full alignment of its sovereign operations by July 1, 2023. Alignment of its nonsovereign operations will reach 85 percent by July 1, 2023 and 100 percent by July 1, 2025.

As Asia and the Pacific is expected to recover from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, ADB also announced plans to scale up investments in adaptation and resilience, resulting in cumulative financing of $9 billion in 2019–2024, said an ADB press release.

The Paris Agreement aims to keep the rise in global temperatures to well below 2°C, preferably to 1.5°C, compared to pre-industrial levels.

“ADB recognizes that the implementation of the Paris Agreement is critical in the global fight against climate change,” said ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa.

“By fully aligning our operations to the goals of the Paris Agreement and expanding our investments in resilience and adaptation, ADB will lower the carbon footprint across Asia and the Pacific and help our developing member countries (DMCs) to move their economies toward a more sustainable, resilient, and inclusive future.” he added.

Asakawa made the announcement at the first V20 Climate Vulnerables Finance Summit, hosted by the Government of Bangladesh.

The V20 comprises 48 countries, most of which have relatively small gross domestic products and are uniquely vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

Nineteen of the V20 member countries are ADB DMCs: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Fiji, Kiribati, the Maldives, the Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Nepal, Palau, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Samoa, Sri Lanka, Timor-Leste, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, and Viet Nam.

The summit was chaired by Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina who was joined by V20 member leaders and ministers, as well as United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, European Investment Bank President Werner Hoyer, US Special Envoy on Climate John Kerry, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank President Jin Liqun, and World Bank Group President David Malpass, among others.

The release said to align its operations to the goals of the Paris Agreement, ADB will support the development and implementation of its DMCs’ ambitious climate plans by addressing physical climate risk and safeguarding “just transitions” away from fossil fuel-dependent industries.

New ADB operations will be screened using a framework of methodologies developed jointly with other multilateral development banks to help ensure projects meet low-carbon and climate-resilient standards consistent with the Paris Agreement.

The alignment of its operations with the Paris Agreement and an expanded focus on adaptation and resilience will complement ADB’s ambitious climate targets of ensuring 75 percent of the total number of ADB’s operations support climate action and ADB’s own climate finance resources reach $80 billion by 2030.

These actions will help ADB’s DMCs achieve, and even increase, their Paris Agreement commitments while charting a fair and equitable path to net-zero and climate-resilient development.