The UK has pledged to invest £8.5 million to help fight climate change in Colombia and protect its unique ecosystem.
UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt and Colombian Environment Minister Ricardo Lozanzo have signed an agreement and committed to accelerating the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
The news follows the UK Government setting a new net zero emissions target for 2050.
Colombia has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 20% by 2030 and 30% by 2030 if it receives international financial support.
Deforestation and change in land use account for a significant amount of the emissions in the country and it is facing new challenges to protect the Amazon.
Around £3.5 million of the funding will protect Colombia’s ecosystem, with Royal Botanic Gardens Kew to build a public database of useful plants and help entrepreneurs make money sustainably from their domestic plant species.
The rest of the investment – £5 million – will be used to help Colombia’s finance industry become green, sharing the City of London’s expertise and introducing low emission vehicles into major cities.
Mr Hunt said: “The UK and Colombia are both committed to the global effort to stop climate change. The Amazon rainforest provides the lungs of the planet and the Colombian Government is facing a continued challenge in protecting it from destruction.
“The UK pledges lasting support to President Duque in his efforts to safeguard such vital environmental assets. This represents the thriving relationship we have with Colombia, spanning across a multitude of areas from sustainable growth to education and their vital role in the Venezuela crisis.”
The Colombia-UK Partnership for Sustainable Growth commits both countries to work more closely together to advance low carbon investments and improve resilience against the worst effects of climate change.