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While the world’s developing countries have typically contributed the least to our changing climate, they are already among the most severely affected by its impacts. This presents a global challenge. Significant funding has now been allocated to support developing countries’ ability to effectively tackle climate change. However, their capacity to strategically deploy these funds is a challenge. How well this is delivered will determine the long term prosperity and well-being of developing countries. Risks if development support isn’t strategically planned: 1) Climate projects are often ad hoc, reacting to most urgent needs or based on areas of existing capabilities without reference to long term, strategic climate mitigation and adaptation planning. This risks pursuing projects that are incompatible with longer term mitigation and SDG goals; 2) An ad hoc approach also risks that funding cannot be allocated quickly enough to maximise its potential impact and unlock additional funding.
Pathways to Prosperity (PTP) seeks to support capacity building in up to 10 developing countries across the Southeast Asia and Pacific Islands region, delivered through a partnership approach. The program challenges the current development paradigm by demonstrating that rapid development can be achieved without significantly increasing emissions, and that this decoupling gives developing countries the best chance to achieve prosperity in a rapidly decarbonising world. For developing countries, the PTP approach offers much more than strategies for a prosperous, low emissions future: It supports the design and implementation of pathways aligned to many Sustainable Development Goals - pathways that improve energy affordability and independence, deliver cleaner air and improved health outcomes, grow jobs, reduce poverty, improve climate resilience and ensure today’s investments don’t risk future economic disadvantage. By helping to avoid projected significant growth in the emissions of developing countries, the program can also help delay use of the remaining carbon budget, contributing time to the active global effort to solve the climate crisis.