Washington, April 8, 2010 – A new page was turned today in the global effort to help developing countries to adapt to climate change, as the Adaptation Fund issued its first call for project and program proposals.

“We are making history today by granting funds to finance concrete adaptation projects and programs in developing countries, which are based on their national priorities, and may be financed through the ground-breaking direct access modality. We expect to have funds of US $ 400 million available by 2012, which means that the Adaptation Fund does not have the resources to fully match the enormous adaptation needs of the developing countries, but it is an important step forward,” says Farrukh Iqbal Khan, the Chairman of the Adaptation Fund Board. We expect that donors would come forward now to help support this international institution which has been built painstakingly over the past two years.

This opening of the call for proposals follows the decision of the Adaptation Fund Board in late March by which it accredited the first agencies to manage grants from the Adaptation Fund. The group of first three accredited Implementing Entities includes Centre de Suivi Ecologique from Senegal which is a national organization that will be able to propose adaptation projects in Senegal directly to the Board, and to receive funds directly from the Adaptation Fund. The direct access modality is a new and innovative feature in international development finance, designed by the Board to provide to the countries a simplified and accelerated way to access and manage funds. The accreditation decision was supported by a stringent analysis of the fiduciary standards of the accredited organization, carried out by a panel of experts.

Several other developing countries are expected to have their respective entities accredited during this year. In addition to the Senegalese entity, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank were accredited as Implementing Entities, and they provide an alternative path for developing countries to access finance from the Adaptation Fund.

The Adaptation Fund is a self-standing fund established under the Kyoto Protocol of the UN Climate Change Convention, which gets its funding from a two percent share of proceeds of all Certified Emission Reductions issued under the Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism projects and other sources of funding. The Fund is designed to finance concrete climate change adaptation projects and programs based on the needs, views and priorities of developing countries.