The European Commission (EC) wants the Europen Union countries to provide $2-15 billion each year to help poor countries take measures to protect against climate change impact.
According to UN estimates, poor nations will need about $100 billion per year for climate adaptation and much of that would come from levies on carbon trading.
The commission hopes its proposal would stimulate negotiations leading to December's UN summit in Copenhagen.
According to environmental campaign groups, the sums fall short of what EU should be spending.
Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso said with less than 90 days to go for Copenhagen the commission needs to make serious progress in the negotiations.
However, according to Joris den Blanken of Greenpeace, the EU was trying to get away with leaving a tip rather than footing its share of the bill.