Kiribati’s previous application for the climate fund turned down, a new one under way
The President, His Excellency President Taneti Maamau, has stated in defence of his new climate change approach, denying the notion of drowning atolls that Kiribati’s application for the green climate fund that was submitted by the last administration to finance climate related projects had been rejected because of some procedural errors.
The President went further to say that surprisingly neighbouring Tuvalu with a population of about 15,000 has been granted about $30 million out of the same fund to be spent on seawalls on a number of islands. The President said his predecessor’s government had not followed the prescribed procedure nor work with a recognized agency and as a result the application was rejected. However, encouragingly President Maamau has renewed Kiribati’s efforts to obtain a share from the Green Climate Fund and with the help of the UNDP submitted a fresh application the UN body controlling the fund. The President confirmed that the project proposal is being considered and hoped that funds would be available soon. In the meantime, the Government has received an initial grant of about half a million dollars to assist with initial preparatory work. The President was saying this in response to criticisms from a member of Parliament for Nikunau Island, Mr Rimeta Beniamina, MP, also a former presidential candidate contesting against the current president and a former Minister for Transport, Information and Tourism Development in the Tong administration, who has accused the new government of not doing enough for islands and peoples suffering from coastal erosion and other impacts of climate change