MANILA, PHILIPPINES - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is exploring ways to develop a future carbon fund beyond the 2012 period of the Kyoto Protocol, as part of its commitment to help its member countries and development partners address climate change issues.

Attending the 13th Conference of Parties to the United Nations Climate Change Conference being held in Bali, Indonesia, ADB Vice-President of Knowledge Management Ursula Schaefer-Preuss said ADB is committed to help meet the challenges presented by climate change and is prepared to do more, including developing the future carbon fund.

"The fund will be the first of its kind. It will provide upfront financing for clean energy projects leveraging carbon credits to be generated after 2012, and will therefore help bridge the gap until an international successor agreement is in place," Ms. Schaefer-Preuss said.

"Climate change is a global challenge, and the case for action is particularly strong in Asia and the Pacific region," she said. "It is home to more than half of the world's poor, who are predicted to suffer the greatest from expected adverse impacts. The region will increasingly be a major source of greenhouse gas emissions, a consequence of rapid and carbon-intensive economic growth."

Developing countries in the region are more concerned about the threats of climate change, and are responding with strategies and programs for both climate change mitigation and adaptation.

"The requirements are clear: deployment of low-carbon and efficient technologies, pricing of carbon emissions, appropriate policy and regulatory frameworks, sustainable land use, climate-resilient infrastructure, disaster preparedness, and a range of additional adaptation measures," she said, adding that large financial resources and a collective response will be needed from governments, international organizations, civil society and the private sector. "We all have to do our respective share. ADB is rising to the challenge."

The Vice-President noted ADB's Clean Energy and Environment Program was launched to help fill gaps in financing and knowledge and foster partnership. Additionally, ADB expects to expand its energy efficiency and renewable energy portfolio to $1 billion a year.

Currently, ADB manages the Asia Pacific Carbon Fund (APCF), which has raised $151.8 million to help develop clean energy projects in the Asia Pacific region. The APCF, which is part of ADB's Carbon Market Initiative, targets energy efficiency, clean energy and methane capture and utilization projects with strong development and environmental benefits.