What you need to know:
- The approved work programme in Brasilia includes regional and global initiatives related to the country's rich biodiversity.
- One noteworthy initiative involves mapping biodiversity in indigenous territories, a crucial step in safeguarding ancestral knowledge and promoting integrated biodiversity management.
In a move aimed at accelerating environmental action worldwide, the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council early last week approved the release of Sh196.6 billion ($1.4 billion) to address the pressing issues of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution.
The decision was made during the GEF council meeting in Brazil and comes at a time of growing momentum for global environmental diplomacy. The council members who represent constituent groups of the multilateral fund’s 185 member countries expressed strong support for efforts to address environmental threats in a holistic manner such as through the Amazon, Congo and Critical Forest Biomes Integrated Program which spans across 25 countries.
The GEF funding, established in 1992 to enable developing countries to take action on urgent environmental challenges, is set to generate another Sh1.3 trillion ($9.1 billion) in co-financing from other sources for total support of Sh1.5 trillion ( $10.5 billion). Over the past three decades, the GEF has provided more than Sh3.2 trillion ($23 billion) and mobilised Sh181 trillion ($129 billion) in co-financing for more than 5,000 national and regional projects.
“This large and broad infusion of support will enable developing countries including Brazil to respond more strategically to environmental concerns that affect us all,” said Carlos Manuel Rodríguez, GEF CEO and chairperson. “We are very pleased to provide funding on this scale as we look to launch and host the new Global Biodiversity Framework Fund.”
Kenya is among the 136 countries set to benefit from the funding package that targets developing nations, countries with transitioning economies, least developed countries and small Island developing states. The fund will focus on combating species and habitat loss in line with the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework agreed upon at the Convention on Biological Diversity COP15 in December last year.
Among the other integrated programmes receiving funding are those targeting blue and green Islands, circular solutions to plastic pollution, ecosystem restoration, eliminating hazardous chemicals from supply chains and a net-zero nature-positive accelerator.
The approved work programme in Brasilia includes regional and global initiatives related to the country's rich biodiversity. One noteworthy initiative involves mapping biodiversity in indigenous territories, a crucial step in safeguarding ancestral knowledge and promoting integrated biodiversity management.
The GEF-8 funding period, covering 2022 to 2026, will see a total deployment of Sh744.3 billion ($5.3 billion) in donor funding. To attract private investment, the GEF has introduced blended finance projects that deploy non-grant resources such as loans and guarantees. Much of the support is set to be delivered through six of 11 new Integrated Programmes, designed to target environmental degradation across different sectors.
The Brasilia meeting is a stepping-stone to the once-every-four-years GEF Assembly, which will take place in Vancouver in August.