Bonn, Germany, 1 November 2013 – Rwanda today became the fifth country globally to fully take advantage of the Adaptation Fund’s groundbreaking direct access modality, with a grant of US$ 9.97 million for a project that aims to reduce the impact of climate extremes in its northwest region. The project, approved today in the twenty-second meeting of the Adaptation Fund Board, will focus on participative approaches to climate adaptation in the districts of Nyabihu and Musanze. The project will be fully supervised by the Rwandan Ministry of Natural Resources, an accredited National Implementing Entity (NIE) of the Fund. The approval of this project increases the Fund’s total portfolio of concrete adaptation investments to US$ 200 million.
The Board also confirmed the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) as a Regional Implementing Entity (RIE) of the Fund. Headquartered in Samoa, SPREP focuses on building climate resilience and promoting sustainable development, and now offers a new opportunity to small island nations to climate-proof development in the Pacific region.
The Board also streamlined the application of environmental and social safeguards throughout its portfolio by approving an environmental and social policy. The policy, which reflects constructive inputs from civil society received through public consultation, provides guidance to implementing entities on safeguarding communities and the environment in all projects and programmes financed by the Fund. To help countries integrate such safeguards in their adaptation work, the Board approved a programme for readiness to climate finance. The readiness programme will assist national entities in developing countries to build the capacities needed to implement adaptation projects, and will support entities in complying with environmental and social safeguards.
The Chair of the Board, Mr. Hans Olav Ibrekk, from Norway, expressed optimism that the upcoming Conference of the Parties in Warsaw (COP19) would see countries renew their commitment to providing sustainable and predictable finance to developing countries through the Adaptation Fund. He pointed out that the Fund was fully operational, was delivering results, and now had a waiting list of eight projects that were ready to be approved but could not be funded until new resources were received. The meeting closed with the election of the next Chair of the Adaptation Fund Board, Mr. Mamadou Honadia, from Burkina Faso, who will take up his position as Chair in early 2014.
The innovative Adaptation Fund finances projects and programmes that help countries adapt to the negative effects of climate change. Projects are based on the needs, views and priorities of developing, vulnerable countries. The Adaptation Fund was established under the Kyoto Protocol of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and has committed US$ 200 million since 2010 to help developing countries adapt to climate change. The Fund is financed in part by government and private donors, and also from a two percent share of proceeds of Certified Emission Reductions issued under the Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism projects.
Media contact: Cathryn Poff, Communications, Adaptation Fund Board Secretariat, firstname.lastname@example.org or +1.202.473.5463.