The World Bank is undertaking a number of changes to try to better address climate change in its operations, including tools to address climate risks and resilience in projects, more systematic accounting of greenhouse gas emissions from projects, and ongoing organizational efforts to incentivize staff to include climate change concerns in project design.
All these efforts come as World Bank President Jim Kim has ramped up rhetoric about the institution’s role in addressing global climate change — but the reality is that bank operations have fallen short of meeting that goal.
Only 25 percent of projects consider the risks posed by climate change in their design, and even fewer take into account the impact of greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new report by the World Resources Institute released on Wednesday.
The report — which looked at projects approved by the World Bank’s board of directors over 18 months between July 2012 and January 2014 — examined how how the institution performed on including sustainability in project design. It found that not only were projects not looking at opportunities for climate change mitigation, they were not even addressing risks posed by climate change to programs.