COP26: More than 50 charities link up for £3m climate emergencies fund

More than 50 charities have come together for a scheme that offers funding to the international aid sector, to ensure it can swiftly respond to climate emergencies.

The service, called Start Ready, has been launched to coincide with COP26 by Start Network, a coalition of charities including Oxfam, Save the Children and Help Foundation to “revolutionise humanitarian action in the era of escalating climate emergencies”.

This includes helping charities prepare for environmental disasters and make funds available as soon as a crisis is predicted.

A total of £3m in funding has been committed to launch the service. This includes £1m from the UK government as well as funding from the French government, the IKEA Foundation and the Margaret A Cargill Philanthropies.

Through the initiative pre-agreed funding for predictable crises such as droughts, flooding and heatwaves, will be made available. Support will be based on locally led action and data.

“The climate emergency is escalating rapidly, but the global humanitarian funding system is not keeping pace,” said Start Network chief executive Christina Bennett.

“Although 55% of crises are somewhat predictable, only 1% of humanitarian funding is released before disaster strikes.

“We are delighted to launch Start Ready. Pre-emptive climate risk financing will revolutionise the aid sector by making funding more efficient and effective. It will help communities become more resilient to climate risks – and save more lives.”

Vel Gnanendran, climate and environment director at the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, added that the UK government had committed funding to the scheme “to help organisations deliver earlier and more effective humanitarian action across up to eight countries – protecting more lives and livelihoods from climate-related emergencies."

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