MCFly spoke to one of its people with the Finger on the Pulse (or legume- we’re not really sure) about the very new “Climate Change Foundation (CCF)”, a potential new source of money for climate change action in Greater Manchester.
What is the Climate Change Foundation and where is the money going to come from?
The CCF is conceived as a means by which investment can be generated for substantial and possibly radical work on climate change mitigation and adaptation in the city region. It will be independent of the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA) and owned by its investors. This could give the body useful flexibility in terms of what it can fund – and how fast it can do it. It will most likely mix private sector funds with other sources such as endowments and possibly the European Investment Bank. It is possibly best viewed as a vital function of the new work on Climate Change in the city region – which may or may not be separate from the Manchester Climate Change Agency. So basically, it is an idea that is being explored but will not see light of day until well after the Environment Commission and the Manchester Climate Change Agency are open for business, and settled in, early next year. It’s unlikely that public funds will be used for running the thing.
What is it supposed to achieve?
Cold Hard Cash for good and substantial Climate Change work – and cash that could be independent of the political processes of AGMA. It is also a way to get past the Town Hall credibility gap that is all too real to many sectors outside of the Town Halls of the region. It will also make real the ‘investment proposition’ on Climate Change -so the Foundation can say to organisations looking to reduce their emissions ‘we enable you to cut your energy use/make your own low carbon energy and that will make you money – which you then use to pay us back.’ An oversimplification for sure, but applicable to many circumstances – especially with a longish pay back period.
How might it go Horribly Wrong?
* If energy stays so cheap that the investment in saving it or generating it doesn’t pay. At the moment, the Recession will ensure that even cheapish energy will be worth saving [MCFly notes that on Nov 21 oil was below $50 a barrel…] New regulation will also affect this – especially in the realms of planning and Carbon Trading.
* If AGMA don’t realise how valuable the Foundation could be and don’t engage in it, or don’t allow it to be independent.
* If people get so confused about the proliferation of Climate Change bodies that they don’t get the rationale.
Watch this space- MCFly will follow the story…