Global philanthropic donations towards mitigating climate change have slowed, with the Middle East seeing the least amount of funding of all regions, according to a new report by ClimateWorks, a US-based nonprofit tracking climate philanthropy.
During 2022, total philanthropic giving by foundations and individual donors was estimated at US$ 811 billion, of which less than two percent ($7.8bn - $12.8bn) was directed towards tackling climate change.
These figures, according to the ClimateWorks’ Funding Trends Report, are essentially unchanged from 2021.
Helen Mountford, president and CEO at ClimateWorks, said the data showed a concerning slowdown at a time when climate philanthropy needed to increase in order to play its part in limiting global warming and achieving net zero targets.
“Overall, we have a fairly disappointing picture of climate philanthropy,” she explained. In a year that was marked by global economic challenges, record breaking temperatures, and a surge in climate related disasters, she said: “More could have been done to accelerate climate action.”
“After years of growth, philanthropic funding to mitigate climate change showed no growth at all in 2022, and still falls far short of the scale required for the global crisis,” Mountford added.
Foundations in North America and Europe led the way, accounting for a combined 63 percent of total giving to climate mitigation initiatives during 2022. But the region that saw the biggest surge in momentum was Africa, whose nine percent of the total global climate giving represented a 38 percent increase from 2021.
By comparison, foundations in the Middle East and Central Asia region saw the least amount of philanthropic funding towards the climate crisis, according to Helene Desanlis, director of Climate Philanthropy at ClimateWorks and one of the authors of the report.