Dutch allocate DF500m for climate change

One fifth earmarked for joint implementation projects in central, eastern, Europe

The Dutch cabinet on Friday approved a DF500m (Ecu224m) package of funding for climate change measures. DF100m of this is earmarked for joint implementation projects to reduce emissions of methane, nitrous oxide and fluorocarbons in central and eastern European countries. DF30m is to be spent on a project to increase the area of forests in the Netherlands by 3,500 to 4,000 hectares to act as a carbon dioxide sink. Last month, the government announced a scheme to run from 1 January 1999 to award companies carbon dioxide emission reduction credits in return for investment in afforestation projects. The remaining money will be spent on energy efficiency measures, transport initiatives and investment in cleaner energy sources. The DF500m is part of an extra DF750m allocated by the cabinet for climate change in the 1998 budget, which doubled the amount of money previously spent. The cabinet said in its recently published national environmental policy plan (NEPP-3) that more funds would be needed, but deferred decisions until after next month's general election (ENDS Daily 6 February). The Dutch parliament is due to debate NEPP-3 today.

Follow Up:
Dutch environment ministry, tel: +31 70 339 3939.

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