The 67th meeting of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council is currently underway in Washington DC from 17-24 June. 

Key Highlights

  • An amount of $736.4 million will be allocated towards environmental protection at the Global Environment Facility (GEF) council meeting being held in Washington, DC.
  • The GEF will consider projects that aim to protect biodiversity, combat climate change and pollution, and support land and ocean health.
  • The councils of the GEF Trust Fund, Global Biodiversity Framework Fund (GBFF), and Least Developed Countries Fund and Special Climate Change Fund (LDCF/SCCF) will consider $495.6 million, $37.8 million and $203 million respectively. 

GEF Trust Fund: The GEF Trust Fund will decide on projects under the GEF-8 funding cycle, running from July 2022 to June 2026. Projects include:

  • Land restoration in the Sahel region through the Great Green Wall project
  • Conservation of terrestrial and marine biodiversity in Somalia, etc.

Global Biodiversity Framework Fund (GBFF): Launched in August 2023 at the Seventh GEF Assembly, the GBFF’s inaugural work program will fund conservation initiatives in Brazil and Mexico. 

  • GBFF aims to help countries achieve the goals of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework. 
  • LDCF/SCCF: The GEF council members will also meet as the governing body for LDCF and SCCF, considering $203 million in funding for 14 climate adaptation initiatives in countries like Angola, Cambodia, Chad etc.

About the Global Environment Facility (GEF)

  • The GEF was established in anticipation of the 1992 Rio Earth Summit by the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) to address the planet’s most critical environmental issues.
    The UNFCCC secretariat (UN Climate Change) is the United Nations entity tasked with supporting the global response to the threat of climate change.
  • GEF funding is provided by participating donor countries and made available to developing countries and countries with economies in transition to meet the objectives of international environmental conventions and agreements.
  • Financial contributions by donor countries are provided via several trust funds administered by the World Bank acting as the GEF Trustee and serviced by a functionally independent Secretariat housed at the World Bank.
  • The Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) is also managed by the GEF and operates in parallel with the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF).

GEF Trust Fund

  • It includes a collection of funds aimed at combating biodiversity loss, climate change, pollution, and stresses on land and ocean health.

The GEF provides financial support for major international environmental conventions such as:

  • The Minamata Convention on Mercury.
  • The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs).
  • The United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD).
  • The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).
  • The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
  • Global Biodiversity Framework Fund (GBFF)

GEF Council

  • The GEF includes 184 member countries including India. 
  • Its main governing body is the GEF Council, consisting of 32 members appointed by constituencies of GEF member countries (14 from developed countries, 16 from developing countries, and two from economies in transition). 
  • The GEF Secretariat is headquartered in Washington, D.C.
  • The Council develops, adopts, and evaluates the operational policies and programs for GEF-financed activities.
    The GEF Council, which usually meets twice a year, will meet three times in 2024. 
  • It reviews and approves the work program (projects submitted for approval), making decisions by consensus.

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