Executive Secretaries Call for Facility Linking Rio Conventions
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Executive Secretaries of the three Rio Conventions called for the establishment of a project preparation facility to finance projects addressing common issues across the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

The proposed Facility would deliver on existing commitments under the Conventions by promoting large-scale transformative projects and catalyzing coordinated action.

14 November 2017: Delivering a joint statement at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany, the Executive Secretaries of the three Rio Conventions called for the establishment of a project preparation facility to finance larger projects addressing common issues across the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

Making the case for a common approach, the statement notes that the challenges of land degradation, biodiversity loss and climate change are fundamentally intertwined, yet they are often addressed in isolation when implementing projects on the ground. It highlights, for example, that current management practices in the land use sector are responsible for approximately 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions while biodiversity is disappearing at rates that are well above the “naturally occurring ‘background’ extinction rate.” The statement further notes that, with over 1.3 billion people reliant on degrading land and exposed to an unprecedented level of climate stress, “the situation is expected to worsen.”

The statement refers to numerous decisions adopted by the three respective Conferences of the Parties (COPs) as well as financial commitments by the international community that are aimed at harnessing synergies, enhancing coordination and increasing the effectiveness of operations across the three Conventions. It notes, however, that the existing technical assistance facilities are sector-specific, hence they do not leverage synergies across land, climate and biodiversity interventions.

Against this backdrop, the proposed facility would seek to promote an integrated, coherent and multi-disciplinary approach to common issues among the three Conventions, while supporting their respective mandates. The expected objectives of the facility would be to: deliver on existing commitments by promoting large-scale transformative projects to fill existing gaps between projects and funding; and act as a catalyst for more coordinated action.

“This facility will help access project funding for a wide variety of sources,” said Cristiana Paşca Palmer, Executive Secretary, CBD.

“There is strong demand for a ‘Rio Conventions Project Preparation Facility’ to help finance large-scale, transformative projects that can deliver multiple benefits in addressing global challenges and in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals,” said Monique Barbut, Executive Secretary of the UNCCD. Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, said that “the need for supporting improved proposal design and structuring the investment case for multi-dimensional projects is the core mandate of this facility.” “This facility will help access project funding for a wide variety of sources, including blended finance and public private partnerships,” said Cristiana Paşca Palmer, Executive Secretary, CBD.

The Facility would simultaneously contribute to the implementation of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets under the CBD, the Land Degradation Neutrality targets under the UNCCD, and the Nationally Determined Contributions and National Adaptation Plans under the UNFCCC. [UNFCCC Press Release] [UNCCD Press Release] [Joint Statement]


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