The Rockefeller Foundation Announces USD$1.5 million to Help Transition Developing Countries Away From Fossil Fuels

The Rockefeller Foundation has today pledged USD$1.5 million to a new global initiative which will support developing countries transitioning towards clean energy. Recently launched by the Energy Transition Council, a global coalition of leaders committed to achieving net-zero emissions by mid-century, the £10million (approximately $13.8 million) Rapid Response Facility (RRF) initiative will help developing countries more effectively plan, develop, and implement cleaner energy projects. In the lead-up to COP26, the United Nations climate change conference hosted by the UK later this year, the facility will support countries to reduce carbon emissions through strategic planning, technical and capacity building assistance.

“Climate change is the world’s greatest existential threat, and every scenario that reduces CO2 emissions must be pursued,” said Dr. Rajiv J. Shah, President of The Rockefeller Foundation. “The RRF will play a vital role in advancing a just transition to renewable energy that will spur more inclusive economic development by expanding access to clean electricity for energy-poor people around the world.”

The $1.5 million pledge, in honour of Earth Day 2021 and its theme, “Restore our Earth”, is part of The Rockefeller Foundation’s billion-dollar commitment to drive a more sustainable, inclusive global recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. This three-year effort (2021-2023) is also the single largest in the Foundation’s 108-year history, which has distributed more than $22 billion since its inception.

Accelerating access to reliable, renewable electricity in underserved, low-income communities worldwide is a top priority of The Foundation, which has worked for nearly a decade to improve the lives of over 500,000 people in India, Myanmar and parts of sub-Saharan Africa with distributed renewable energy technologies. Expanding access to clean, reliable electricity is essential for the wellbeing and economic opportunity of more than 40% of the world’s population that still lives without reliable electricity access.

“The RRF is an important tool in providing clean power for communities most impacted by the dual crises of Covid-19 and climate change,” said Ashvin Dayal, Senior Vice-President of the Power & Climate Initiative at The Rockefeller Foundation. “As the world comes together this Earth Day and works collectively to drive action at COP26 later this year, the RRF is a powerful opportunity to advance both sustainable development goals of ending energy poverty and combatting the climate crisis.”