GCF speeds up funding flow with 4 partner agreements signed hours after Board approval

  • Article type Press release
  • Publication date 20 Nov 2020

The Green Climate Fund (GCF) has signed detailed agreements with its partners to implement four new projects, just hours after funding approval was granted by the GCF Board. The signing of the Funded Activity Agreements (FAAs) in the margins of last week’s B.27 Board meeting accelerates the delivery of climate finance to developing countries. 

The FAAs relate to four new climate projects: 

  • Collaborating with the UN Food and Agriculture Oganization (FAO) for REDD+ results based payments in Argentina (utilising USD 82 million of GCF finances) 
  • Working with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for REDD+ results based payments in Costa Rica (utilising USD 54.1 million of GCF finances)
  • Partnering with UNDP to enhance the climate resilience of Mongolian farmers (utilising USD 79.2 million of GCF finances)
  • Working with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to improve climate warning in five Pacific island states (utilising USD 49.9 million of GCF finances).

Noting the importance of climate finance reaching beneficiaries as quickly as possible while also ensuring there are sufficient stages of due diligence in expenditure, GCF Executive Director Yannick Glemarec said: “What we have been doing for the past couple of years is to dramatically compress the time it takes for each of our different stages.”

He noted in this case the duration of interaction between GCF, which allocates the funds, and its partnering Accredited Entities, which propose and implement GCF-approved projects, was reduced from what had normally taken months to hours. “This is a very strong testament of our commitment to making a difference,” he said. 

Joining Glemarec in a virtual signing of the four implementation agreements, Costa Rica Environment Minister Andrea Meza Murillo highlighted the need for quick funding deployment to deal with the twin crises of climate change and COVID-19. She said the rapid progression in GCF’s injection of USD 54.1 million for her country’s avoidance of deforestation under its REDD+ programme will be a critical part of national green recovery efforts from COVID-19. 

“We need to demonstrate that nature-based solutions can be part of this recovery plan, and with this project we will be able to do this,” she said. “I think that what the Green Climate Fund is doing right now is to demonstrate transformational change is possible.”

FAO Director-General Qu Dongyu said the speeding up of climate finance implementation reflected FAO’s desire to enhance its collaboration with GCF to drive systematic transformation on the ground, while ensuring this “doesn’t ignore the interests and benefits of the farmers, especially smallholder farmers.”

The GCF Board’s 27th meeting, its last for 2020, approved over USD 1 billion of funding for low-emission, climate-resilient initiatives across a broad sweep of developing counties. The approvals at the meeting mean that GCF programmed over USD 2 billion in new climate financing in 2020, a record annual amount for the Fund. It also adopted the Updated Strategic Plan for the Green Climate Fund 2020-2023, setting an ambitious direction for GCF during its first replenishment period.