Every British family sends £144 abroad to fight climate change

BRITAIN'S climate change policy came under new fire yesterday after the staggering amount taxpayers are being made to spend on environment projects overseas was revealed.


A total of £3.8billion of public money has been paid out or earmarked for projects abroad to fight climate change since 2007 - the equivalent of £144 for every household in the UK.

Schemes have even included helping traditional African"rainmakers'' who use buried herbs to forecast the weather. And officials have spent around £250,000 attending climate control conferences.

Just over £900million of money officially classed as aid was in fact spent on climate change work between 2007 and 2010, the bulk of it coming from the Department for International Development.

Another £2.9billion was committed in 2010 to an International Climate Fund to help reduce poverty and tackle climate change in developing countries between 2011 and 2015.


DFID is handing over £1.8billion, the Energy Department is giving £1billion, and the Environment Department is also contributing.

The figures prompted fierce attacks on DFID's budget - set to rise from £8.4billion last year to £11.5billion a year by 2015.

"The real solution is trade, not aid," said Conservative MP Peter Bone."Again it is overseas aid being misspent. The sooner we get a grip and cut it the better it will be for this country, and for the recipients as well."

Fellow Conservative MP Philip Davies said: "The public are paying out vast amounts of money that we cannot afford."

Matthew Sinclair, director of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said: "The international aid budget should be there to directly help and support some of the world's poorest and it is not at all clear that all the programmes on which British taxpayers' money has been spent fulfil that basic objective. This is more evidence that a freeze in the aid budget would be fairer."