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What do we know about the effects of double objectives in climate aid?

A new EBA report based on a systematic review of impact evaluations about our understanding of the double objectives, climate benefits and poverty reduction, shows a ‘know-do gap’. Three Focali members, Gunnar Köhlin, Madelene Ostwald and Eskil Mattson, were part of the review that focused on forest conservation and household energy transitions.

More and more aid is used for climate related interventions in developing countries. In the last 15 years, bilateral aid has increased from 3 to 20 billion USD annually. Globally, the ambition is to further five-fold this kind of support to at least 100 billion USD by 2020. While climate aid is clearly on the rise, there are critical voices against using development aid for climate related purposes. At the same time, addressing poverty through climate related interventions, whether they be for adaptation or mitigation, is an attractive prospect, not least for policymakers. Essentially it is a way of killing two birds with a stone.

But, what do we know about the effects? Although some solid knowledge does exist, the authors argue that there is a ‘know-do gap’, i.e. a gap between what we know and what we do.

About the report:

In the recent EBA (Expertgruppen för Biståndsanalys) report from March 2016, a systematic review of impact evaluations in two fields (forest conservation and household energy) has been made. The authors put forward not only specific recommendations for better development impact, but also to improve evaluation practices. This report has served as a point of departure for a broader discussion on donor approaches in the field of climate interventions including what knowledge is needed to ensure aid effectiveness. Read the full report here.

Authors in media:

Read Biståndsdebatten debate article written by the report authors here:
Vi bör veta innan vi gör när klimatbiståndet ökar

Read OmVärlden article including interview with report author Subhrendu Pattanayak here: Klimatbistånd kan inte köra på magkänsla