House Committee Drops Funding for State Department Climate-Change Programs

Just months before the most important U.N. climate conference in years, Republican appropriators in the House of Representatives are taking aim at one of the Obama administration’s most cherished priorities – international climate change funding.

An appropriations bill for the State Department and foreign operations, released Tuesday, excludes funding for three major climate initiatives – the Green Climate Fund, the Clean Technology Fund, and the Strategic Climate Fund – and also removes funding for the U.N.-backed Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Also in the firing line is funding for the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA), the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and debt relief.

The bill eliminates funding for these “lower-priority international programs,” the House Appropriations Committee said in a statement, in order to meet what it views as top priorities – including “funding for security activities around the world,” support for key allies, and increased funding “for embassy and diplomatic security to address new needs identified after the Benghazi terrorist attack.”

“This legislation is first and foremost a national security bill,” said Rep Kay Granger (R-Texas), chairwoman of the Appropriations subcommittee on State and foreign operations.