House Committee Prods Kerry on Move of $500 Million to Climate Fund

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(Photographer: Drew Angerer/Bloomberg)

House Oversight Committee Republicans in a letter called on the Obama administration to explain its authority to transfer $500 million to a climate fund for developing nations without specific congressional permission to do so.

The April 6 letter, from House Oversight & Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and addressed to Secretary of State John Kerry, concerns the half-a-billion-dollar payment the U.S. made last month to the Green Climate Fund.

The House Oversight Committee chairman is seeking all “documents, such as legal memoranda, outlining the Department's position that it is authorized to send these funds” even though Congress never specifically authorized the spending.

The $500 million was a down payment of sorts to a larger $3 billion total the U.S. pledged—over a four-year period—to the GCF in 2014 ahead of international climate talks in Lima, Peru.

Bloomberg BNA senior reporter Dean Scott has the story for subscribers, Panel Challenges Obama Payment to Climate Fund.