Gallagher Co-Authors Op-Ed on Debt-for-Climate Swaps

Kevin GallagherProfessor of Global Development Policy and Director of the Global Development Policy Center at the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, published a Project Syndicate op-ed discussing the global debt crisis and climate change.

In the article, titled “The Need for Debt-for-Climate Swaps,” Gallagher and his co-authors – Shamshad Akhtar, Stephany Griffith-Jones, Jörg Haas, and Ulrich Volz outline the difficult balancing act of tackling global debt while preserving funding for initiatives that actively combat global climate change. In order to reduce global-net carbon dioxide emissions, countries around the world need to up their investments in clean, green initiatives. However, developing countries in dire financial situations may be forced to cut corners and step up their fossil fuel use in order to more quickly relieve their debts.

One potential solution outlined in the op-ed is a “debt-for-climate swap” whereby debt relief is linked to investments in reforestation, biodiversity, and protections for indigenous people.

An excerpt:

There is no question that many countries will need debt relief in order to respond effectively to the COVID-19 crisis, and then to climate-proof their economies in a socially inclusive way. For many people in the countries that are most vulnerable to climate change, coming up with the resources for such investments is a matter of survival.

The full op-ed can be read here.

Kevin Gallagher is a professor of global development policy at Boston University’s Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, where he directs the Global Development Policy Center. He is author or co-author of six books, including most recently, The China Triangle: Latin America’s China Boom and the Fate of the Washington Consensus. Read more about him here.

Reposted from the Pardee School of Global Studies.