The U.S fast start finance contribution

Research reports and studies
May 2012
Taryn Fransen, Kirsten Stasio and Smita Nakhooda

Developed country governments have repeatedly committed to provide new and additional finance to help developing countries transition to low-carbon and climate-resilient growth.

This assessment considers U.S. efforts to provide 'fast start finance' (FSF) in fiscal years 2010 and 2011 in the context of the pledge by developed countries to mobilize $30 billion from 2010 to 2012 under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It is part of a series scrutinizing how developed countries are defining, delivering, and reporting FSF.

Given the size of its economy and its historic responsibility as a top emitter of greenhouse gases, the United States has a major role to play in delivering FSF. Key conclusions are:

  • The U.S. FSF contribution of $5.1m reflects a positive effort made in challenging political and economic circumstances, but there is more to be done. 
  • The US does not count private finance toward its FSF contribution, but it does count non-grant instruments as well as development assistance.
  • While the FSF contribution reflects some new effort to address climate change, it is unclear that the contribution as a whole can be considered "new and additional."
  • There is a need for additional transparency and harmonization in reporting.