All life on Earth depends on clean air and water, biodiversity, and healthy forests, land, oceans and a stable climate. These global commons—the ecosystems, biomes and processes that regulate the stability and resilience of the Earth system—are the very foundation of our global economy and modern society. Today, they are facing an all-too familiar tragedy of over-exploitation and rapid degradation.
The GEF is charged with eliminating the most harmful chemicals, which are covered by the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants, the Minamata Convention on Mercury, and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.
We are at a defining moment in time.
The recent IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C confirmed unequivocally that we are already seeing negative impacts of climate change: sea level rise and more extreme droughts and storms. The negative impacts often hit the poor and vulnerable the most—exactly those who have contributed the least to the problem in the first place.
The IPCC Report also illustrates that unfortunately we are not even close to being on track to limit warming to 1.5° C. Neither are we on track to deliver on the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement.
The GEF supports adaptation to climate change in developing countries through the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), which supports urgent, medium and long-term adaptation needs in least developed countries (LDCF), and the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF), accessible by all developing countries. Established in 2001 at COP 7, the two funds also support implementation of the Paris Agreement.
The Capacity-building Initiative for Transparency (CBIT) supports developing countries to build institutional and technical capacity, both pre- and post-2020, to meet enhanced transparency requirements as defined in Article 13 of the Paris Agreement.
The GEF continually incorporates COP guidance into its programs and operations, as described annually in its report to the COP. As a complementary publication to the GEF’s annual report, this booklet summarizes all guidance to the GEF dating from the first COP to COP 23 and the corresponding GEF responses.
The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) defines biodiversity as “the variability among living organisms from all sources including, inter alia, terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part; this includes diversity within species, between species, and of ecosystems.”
The GEF has positioned itself as one of the main funders for biodiversity conservation in Africa, with a robust portfolio of 380 projects worth $1.27 billion of Biodiversity and leveraging $7 billion in co-financing.
This publication summarizes GEF’s projects and investments in Africa over the last 27 years, and provides examples of successful or unique projects in the GEF’s different thematic areas: protected areas, mainstreaming of biodiversity in the productive sector, wildlife conservation, fisheries, the Nagoya Protocol, the Cartagena Protocol, and the Small Grants Program.