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US to help Pacific islands access Green Climate Fund

  Pacific island climate change campaigners hold a traditional Fijian sevusevu and offer tapa to a community impacted by a massive coal mine in Germany. [Photo: Facebook]

Washington, D.C. — The United States says it's working to improve access to the UN Green Climate Fund for Pacific Islands.

Fiji's prime minister Frank Bainimarama had said stringent criteria around access to the UN funding source should be relaxed so nations vulnerable to climate change could get help.

The US Deputy Assistant Secretary for Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, Matthew J Matthews said having provided a billion US dollars to the fund, his country was deeply committed to it.

Mr Matthews said the US was doing what it could to simplify the application process in a way that provided efficiency and information for oversight of grants.

"So that we guarantee that we're going to be able to follow up and issue funding for valuable projects that are taking place in Pacific Island countries," he said.

"I think out of the 90 projects that have been funded so far, ten of them are in the Pacific Islands. So I think we're off to a pretty good start when you think about the overall global footprint."