- WEB EXCLUSIVE
- PE COFFEEHAUS
About 4,500 people attended from 182 countries. Industrial nations had pledged $30 billion in aid from 2010 to 2012 during the meetings that were held about 5 months ago in Copenhagen to help the poorer developing countries develop programs to adapt to climate change. Developing nations claimed skepticism about the money and believed that funds would merely be relabeled from current allocations. Activists are claiming the funds are being made available as loans and not grants.
"It's like crashing your neighbor's car and then offering a loan to cover the damages," said Antonio Hill, a member of Oxfam.
Officials from the European Union tried to dispel such doubts as they stressed that the $3 billion a year it promised in Copenhagen have been confirmed by finance ministers, and about 70 percent will be handed out as grants. "This is fresh money in any case – we are not recycling money," said Alicia Montalvo, the Spanish climate change official on behalf of the E.U. presidency.
Talks will continue this first week of June as the industrialized nations struggle to recover from a severe recession and still find a way to help the nations seeking to grow.