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Clean air funding outpaces fossil fuels in major shift

In 2021, international development funding for air quality projects surpassed that of fossil fuel projects for the first time, reaching $2.3 billion, an increase of $800 million from fossil fuel projects.

This significant drop from $11.9 billion in 2019, the peak for fossil fuel funding, suggests a potential shift in the global financing landscape away from fossil fuels.

Clean air funding gap

Despite this positive development, the Clean Air Fund report highlights a substantial funding shortfall for clean air projects. Air pollution, a major public health concern, causes 7 million premature deaths annually.

Each dollar invested in clean air initiatives can generate $30 in economic benefits. Yet, between 2015 and 2021, clean air projects received only 0.7% of international development finance.

Unequal distribution of funding

The report also reveals an uneven distribution of funding, with 86% of clean air funding from 2015 to 2021 concentrated in just five countries: China, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Mongolia, and Pakistan.

China alone received 37% of global clean air funding during this period, while Africa, despite having five of the world's ten most polluted countries, received just 5%.

Improved monitoring and analysis

Experts emphasize the need for increased investment in air quality monitoring and analysis to address this funding inequity. Generating data to effectively target interventions and mobilize public and political support for action is crucial in addressing air pollution.

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