IISD Reporting Services: The Green Climate Fund and the Implementation of the Paris Agreement


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International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) Reporting Services

The forty-sixth sessions of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI 46). The Green Climate Fund and the Implementation of the Paris Agreement

In this event, members of the GCF Board and representatives of National Designated Authorities (NDAs) implementing GCF-funded projects shared perspectives on GCF progress. An update on GCF operational developments in the first session was followed by experiences and challenges of engagement with the GCF in the second session. Carolina Fuentes, GCF, moderated the event. 

Howard Bamsey, Executive Director, GCF, welcomed interest in the GCF’s work and outlined the Fund’s focus on implementing 43 Board-approved projects in 2017.

Ayman Shasly, Co-Chair, GCF Board, concentrated on the GCF’s aim to “ignite a paradigm shift” towards reducing emissions and enabling climate-resilient development. Stressing the GCF’s role as the largest organization providing funding to developing countries for adaptation and mitigation action, he announced “great progress” towards the Board’s recently approved workplan. Shasly said that in 2017, the Board is scheduled to consider, inter alia: new funding proposals; potential accredited agencies; and matters relating to the formal replenishment process. 

Announcing that the Fund has approved US$2.2 billion in funding for 43 projects, Clifford Polycarp, GCF, highlighted these projects’ mitigation impacts of 981 MtCO2eq and adaptation impacts reaching 281 million beneficiaries. He stressed the GCF’s aim for geographic balance and even split between adaptation, mitigation and cross-cutting initiatives. 

Jeremiah Sokan, NDA, Liberia, detailed Liberian engagement with the GCF to date, including: GCF Readiness Support; National Adaptation Plans’ Readiness Support; and a US$50 million proposal currently proceeding through the Project Preparation Facility guidelines. He outlined Liberia’s principles of engagement with the GCF, including: a pragmatic programme planning approach; a transparent partnership with frequent consultation; and continuous engagement and communication. 

Celine Dyer, NDA, Cook Islands, highlighted challenges small island developing States face in familiarizing themselves with the procedures, policies and regulations for GCF proposals with limited manpower and minimally detailed guidelines. She suggested a longer timeframe for preparation of readiness proposals and consideration of a streamlined approach similar to that of the Adaptation Fund.  

Jukka Uosukainen, Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN), underscored the need to enhance the linkages between the UNFCCC Technology Mechanism and the Financial Mechanism of the Convention. Reporting that the CTCN has received 180 technology and technical assistance requests from countries, he emphasized the importance of these requests’ potential to lead to high-quality proposals to the GCF. Uosukainen highlighted projects in Tonga, Ghana and Myanmar that have been piloted as readiness proposals.


During the ensuing discussion, participants addressed, inter alia: GCF bilateral agreements regarding privileges and immunities; mainstreaming principles of climate resilience and transformational change across sectors; obstacles to the roll out of reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation and the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries (REDD+) results-based finance; and no-objection procedures as a way to address questions of country ownership.

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