RF and Asian Cities


Foundation to help Asian cities endure global warming

The Rockefeller Foundation President recently came to Thailand on many occasions, one of which concerned the 70-billion US dollar “Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network” project.

According to its President, Dr. Judith Rodin, the Rockefeller Foundation is now planning an experiment to help Asian cities endure global warming instead of stopping it.

Climate change, which has already occurred, will lead to flooding, drought and the water systems in recent health risks like dengue fever.

“We will continue to fund grantees that advocate for the issues that we care deeply about in agricultural productivity and food security in climate change resilience and mitigation in assuring better health for all more heatlh equity,” said Rockefeller Foundation President  Dr. Judith Rodin.

Let alone the foundation’s project, Dr. Rodin added the issues focused on were also dependent on governments to play a key role through their policies and investment.

Meanwhile, main criteria have been set to decide which cities will come under the project, while a final decision on the cities will be made within 2009.

The criteria are governments’ willingness and eagerness to do risk assessment and vulnerability planning and capacity building, while cities predicted to have high growth in urbanisation and those shown to have the greatest vulnerability to occurring climate change also count.

"There’s an ASEAN initiative that is going to link capital cities and we’ll be working closely with that. So this is really an effort to maximise all of these various initiatives and dramatically increase both learning and the capacity," said Dr. Rodin.
Dr. Rodin said all of the learning from the experimental cities would be made available to other networks including other cities like a mega city of Bangkok.

Regarding the current world recession’s impact on climate change, Dr. Rodin also voiced her opinion.

"The financial crisis will present a tremendous opportunity because many nations around the world will be investing in economic stimulus packages," said Dr. Rodin.

While the Rockefeller Foundation was working on new innovations to present more opportunity during the economic crisis, Dr. Rodin said, many conversations on economic stimulus packages were now being held, including on jobs, investment, alternative energy and other climate-friendly issues.

With such cooperation from concerned parties, there’s hope for our environment to go hand in hand with our economy. (TNA)

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