Cancun, Mexico, December 15, 2010  –  the Adaptation Fund Board which concluded its twelfth session in Cancun back to back with the United Nations Climate Change Conference  approved funding for two projects in Nicaragua and Pakistan and five concepts from the Cook Islands, Ecuador, El Salvador, Georgia, and the Maldives for financing at its next session. The Board had earlier approved projects from Senegal and Honduras.
The project in Nicaragua is aimed at reducing risk from floods and droughts, by introducing agro-ecological practices and participatory watershed management in highly vulnerable rural communities. The project in Pakistan addresses the risks of glacial lake outburst floods through the building of technical capacity building and awareness-raising. The two projects total US$9.4 million.
“Yet again the Adaptation Fund has shown seriousness in its resolve to address the challenge of climate change and adaptation. We have taken key decisions which will guide the future of the Fund and the financing that we intent to provide. The Board is confident that it can act as a key player in the future climate change architecture to meet the needs of all developing countries” said Farrukh Iqbal Khan, chairman of the Adaptation Fund Board.
This meeting was the first at which the Board engaged in a dialogue with civil society. Additionally, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) joined the ranks of six other multi-lateral agencies accredited by the Board to implement projects. The Board also appointed new Chairs and Vice-Chairs to take effect at the thirteenth Adaptation Fund Board to be held in Bonn, Germany. Assuming their new roles in March 2011, the new Chair and Vice-Chair of the Adaptation Fund Board are Ana Fornells de Frutos (Spain) and Luis Santos (Uruguay) respectively, the new Chair and Vice-Chair of the Ethics and Finance Committee are Shawkat Ali Mirza (Bangladesh) and Iryna Trofimova (Ukraine) respectively, and the new Chair and Vice-Chair of the Project and Program Review Committee are Hans Olav Ibrekk (Norway) and Jeffrey Spooner (Jamaica) respectively.
Looking forward to the future of the Fund, Ana Fornells de Frutos, the newly appointed Chair , said, “The Adaptation Fund Board has taken the steps to facilitate direct access to our funds. This will enable the Adaptation Fund to have a critical role in the future of climate change finance.”
The current Chair of the Adaptation Fund Board, Farrukh Iqbal Khan also renewed his appeal to the developed countries to contribute generously to the Adaptation Fund Board. “The response to our call for projects is amazing. To date, we have received nearly 20 projects for financing. This shows that the demand for adaptation financing is enormous. Countries are ready to present proposal. However, the Adaptation Fund is constraint to remain cautious in its approach due to limited funds at its disposal” he said.