Say No to Loan, Yes to Grant as Compensation for Climate Change Adaptation
In solidarity with the global climate march that was taking place around the world, anti-corruption youth volunteers of TI-Bangladesh's Youth Engagement and Support (YES) group joined thousand other climate marchers in the capital Dhaka and in 29 locations around the country on 28 November demanding Say No to Loan, Yes to Grant as Compensation for Climate Change Adaptation. Carrying placards and banners from Central Shahid Minar and parading streets through High Court, Shishu Park and Shahbagh, hundreds of YES volunteers urged the Bangladesh delegation to strongly put forward the above demand before the World leaders who will be gathering in Paris for UN Climate Conference (COP-21) from 30 November. Youth includes YES volunteers in country's 29 locations also raised similar demand through rally and human chain.
Bangladesh has been assessed as one of the most vulnerable countries in the world to the effects of climate change. The worsening intensity of extreme weather events is already being felt by Bangladesh’s population, and will have an increasingly detrimental effect on socio-economic development, poverty reduction and security in the coming years.
Keen to ensure that action is taken to shield climate finance from corruption or fraud, TI Bangladesh pioneered climate governance research in Bangladesh. In 2013, TI-Bangladesh unearthed that money allocated for flood defences in the Satkhira coastal region was misused, in collusion with concerned officials. In one of its studies "An assessment of climate finance governance in Bangladesh", it recommended ensuring proactive disclosure of information regarding the disbursement and management of climate finance and adopting Bangladesh-specific ‘Code of Integrity, Transparency and Governance’ to ensure the compliance of all concerned stakeholders to climate finance related international agreements, national policies and regulations. It also urged to allow for the greater participation of CSOs and affected communities in policy formation and project selection, approval and monitoring.
More than a month before the start of global climate march, TI-Bangladesh, through a press conference on 15 October, urged the government to design a plan for proper management and disbursement of climate fund and advocated also for a legally binding agreement in the COP21 conference to keep the global temperature rise below 2 degree. TIB’s position paper containing 14-point demand was submitted to Prime Minister, Environment Minister and relevant stakeholders to place it in COP 21 in Paris. In the wake of TIB's advocacy, the Government changed its earlier announced stance to seek loan for climate finance and reverted back to giving priority to grant/compensation.
TI-Bangladesh also ran a one-minute television commercial from 27-29 November on six television channels with this message that ensuring transparency and accountability are must for climate finance.