Record amount pledged for the Global Environment Facility
Thirty donor countries pledged a record amount of US $4.43 billion for the Global Environment Facility (GEF) on April 17 to support developing countries’ efforts over the next four years to prevent degradation of the global environment. The African Development Bank, as one of the implementing agencies of the GEF since 2007, is a key player to foster a sustainable development path in Africa.
The funding will support projects in more than 140 countries, including 54 in Africa to tackle a broad range of threats to the global environment, including climate change, deforestation, land degradation, extinction of species, toxic chemicals and waste, and threats to oceans and freshwater resources. The GEF is the main global mechanism to support developing countries to take action to fulfill their commitments under the world’s major multilateral environmental agreements. Gilbert Mbesherubusa, AfDB Vice-President of Infrastructure, Private Sector and Regional Integration, commended the announcement of the record funding in GEF-6 and said, “With the African continent bound to register the most significant economic growth over the decades to come, the African Development Bank will need to be at the forefront to ensure that economic growth is in line with the Sustainable Development Goals and the Bank’s Ten-Year Strategy (2013–2022). The GEF, having the same vision of sustainable development as the AfDB, will be a key ally in this endeavour.”
Since 2007, the partnership between the GEF and the AfDB has been growing substantially to achieve environmentally smart and transformational change in Africa. As of April 2014, the overall portfolio of projects managed by the AfDB amounts to US $187 million allocated to 26 projects and programs over the continent. These GEF resources managed by the AfDB have leveraged over US $1.2 billion in co-financing from the AfDB’s own resources, African governments and the private sector. The well diversified portfolio among sectors highlights the fact that half of its activities are geared towards adaptation to climate change.