The Minister for Territory and Sustainability, Damià Calvet, has announced that the Catalan government will allocate an additional €40 million to fund actions to combat climate change next year. The increased budget will be used to fund “mitigation actions, measures to adapt to climate change, and actions to preserve the environment and biodiversity”. Calvet made the announcement at a meeting of Regions4 for Sustainable Development, held within the framework of COP25.
“This €40 million will be on top of the funds already allocated for environmental policies, so it’s good news for the climate in Catalonia and at the planetary level,” said the minister. “The amount will be progressively increased to €150 million. We need more and faster climate action, and this new funding will make that possible.” The minister noted that the funds come from taxes earmarked for environmental action, generated thanks to an environmental taxation policy being applied by the government to address the climate emergency.
According to Calvet, €20 million will go to a climate fund to cover the cost of mitigation and adaptation measures, including “energy transition grants and decarbonisation of mobility (more and better public transport and grants for greening vehicle fleets) and incentives to foster the circular economy”. A commission will determine precisely how the new funds are used. The remaining €20 million will be allocated to actions related to the environment and biodiversity with the aim of “preserving and showcasing our natural spaces and improving management of our natural parks,” said the minister.
Government action in line with European Commission initiatives
Minister Calvet welcomed “the European Commission’s announcement of an ambitious climate change agenda and the intention of reaching a climate agreement at the European level” and “the European Investment Bank’s announcement that it will invest in climate action projects and the Just Transition Fund”.
“Being here at COP25 and working with other sub-national governments will allow us to adapt Catalan policy to the new approaches being pursued by the European Commission,” said the minister. According to Calvet, issues currently under discussion at the global summit will be added to the agenda for the first Catalan Climate Action Summit (to be held in January).
The Catalan government is taking advantage of its participation in various events at COP25 to explain the environmental policies it is carrying out, especially since adopting the Climate Change Law in 2017. The government also participates in meetings and events of the international organisations to which it belongs, such as the Under2 Coalition and Regions4 for Sustainable Development, which advocate the active involvement of sub-national governments in environmental policy carried out at the global level.