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G7 announcement to support pre-arranged finance necessary to saving more lives but should have gone further

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Yesterday's announcement at the G7 summit included a package of support from the UK, Germany and the USA to scale up pre-arranged finance to protect the world’s most vulnerable communities against the impacts of climate change. 

This is a necessary step if governments are committed to saving more lives. 

However, the announcement could have gone further and we are now waiting for concrete targets and a timetable around this support.

The package of support, including £120 million in new funding from the UK and €125 million in new funding from Germany, will enable more proactive responses for communities at-risk of extreme weather events and quicker responses for when climate-related disasters hit, through Start Network partners InsuResilience and the Risk-informed Early Action Partnership (REAP).

As part of the Crisis Lookout Coalition, we want to see the G7 make pre-arranged finance the primary method for funding crises by 2030 across all international aid, and with credible plans in place by COP26, including the annual monitoring of progress. 

If these funds are to have the greatest impact, it is crucial that funding is channelled to at-risk communities to have the greatest ability to act early and these funds should support accountable planning and coordination among key actors on the ground. We want to see the G7 leaders listening to local and national voices to co-create a more proactive, decentralised, power-balanced humanitarian system that is closer to the frontlines.

Our analysis shows that at least 55% of crises can be predicted to an extent, yet less than 1% of funding is pre-arranged in advance and channelled to crises on the basis of a forecast or prediction. This is despite the growing evidence demonstrating that early action can save more lives and cost less.

In addition, local organisations have better and faster access to, and knowledge of the needs of, local communities. Despite this, just 2.1% of funding in 2019 went directly to local and national actors.

Start Network will continue to advocate across the humanitarian sector to make prearranged, locally-led finance the primary method for funding crises. 

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  • by Christina Bennett