Climate change can be seen and felt everywhere, but its effects are greater in some parts of the world than others. And some groups of people are more vulnerable to, for example, drought or flooding, than others. They have often contributed least to climate change and also have fewer resources to arm themselves against its consequences.
National and international climate policy should therefore focus on mitigating further climate change and on helping especially the poorest and most vulnerable groups to adapt to the consequences.
The Paris Climate Agreement states that global warming must be limited to a maximum of 2 – but preferably 1.5 – degrees Celsius. To achieve that goal, we need to switch to renewable energy without delay and on a large scale, and the fossil fuels that are still in the ground must, as far as possible, remain there. Governmental support for the fossil-fuel sector through, for example, export credit insurance, investments by pension funds and other public support, is not in line with the Paris Agreement, and Both ENDS believes that they should be phased out as soon as possible. We are therefore urging national and international governments, financial institutions and pension funds to base their policies on the Paris Agreement.
At the same time, Both ENDS is supporting local organisations, women's groups and others in the Global South in their fight against climate change. We focus especially on local organisations that help communities in areas where the effects of climate change are clearly visible. All around the world, these local civil society organisations, as well as local authorities, knowledge institutes and businesses, are working on ways to adapt to climate change that work best in their local situations, such as small-scale irrigation, restoration, erosion prevention and switching to indigenous crops that are more resistant to drought. Both ENDS is convinced that local knowledge and adaptation strategies offer the best basis for climate policy and is promoting this approach among national and international policy-makers, financial institutions and donors. We also facilitate the sharing of knowledge and information between organisations in our worldwide network.
In addition, since the Green Climate Fund was set up in 2012, we have advocated for direct access by the people that should benefit from the funds: those who are most severely affected by climate change and who are actively arming themselves against it, for example by protecting their natural environment. Women often play a leading part in this struggle. Rather than support large institutions and project developers, the Green Climate Fund should be more accessible to local organisations. Small grants funds can play an important role in achieving this by forming a bridge between big money at international level and local realities. Both ENDS actively monitors the decisions of the Green Climate Fund, supports the participation of environmental and women's groups in decision-making at international and national level and helps to distribute knowledge on the Green Climate Fund more widely.