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Ōtautahi  The New Zealand government has committed $1.3 billion over four years to support countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

At least 50 percent of funding will go to the Pacific as it adapts to the impacts of climate change. The increase means New Zealand is meeting its fair share of global climate funding.

In the lead up to the United Nations climate conference (COP26) in Glasgow, the government has announced a four-fold increase in the support it provides to countries most vulnerable to the climate emergency.

The increase matches New Zealand’s contribution to global climate funding with COP26 host, the United Kingdom, on a per person basis.

Prime minister Jacinda Ardern says Aotearoa will do its fair share in the global race to tackle climate change by providing $1.3 billion to assist lower income countries to protect lives, livelihoods and infrastructure from the impacts of climate change.

Swedish teenage climate campaigner Greta Thunberg has been reported as saying she does not plan to attend VOP26 next month.She is concerned about the impact of the covid pandemic on attendance.

She says the UK government, which is hosting the summit, should wait until global vaccination rates have risen.

The summit will bring together world leaders with the aim of agreeing a plan to tackle climate change.  Thunberg’s decision is likely to be a significant blow for the UK government.

The activist has attended every major climate conference since her first protest outside the Swedish parliament two and a half years ago.

Meanwhile, Ardern says New Zealand’s boost to help support clean energy projects in developing countries, will ensure buildings are able to withstand more damaging storms.

Climate change minister James says at least half of New Zealand’s new $1.3 billion climate finance commitment will go towards supporting Pacific neighbours.

Climate finance is a critical pillar of real and tangible climate change action across the world and the NZ Climate Change Commission, chaired by Dr Rod Carr, has been advising government on the best action the country should take.