GEF Assembly Discusses Facility’s Next Four Years
29 May 2014: The fifth meeting of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Assembly, which convened from 28-29 May, in Cancun, Mexico, highlighted and discussed the GEF2020 Strategy along with the mission and vision guiding the GEF going forward. The fifth meeting of the Assembly was preceded by the 46th meeting of the GEF Council. The GEF Assembly convenes every four years, while the Council convenes twice a year.
The Assembly consisted of plenary sessions and high-level roundtables, exhibits and sides events. The roundtables addressed: Financing Green Growth; Role of Legislation in Protecting the Global Environment; Mainstreaming Natural Capital into Decision-Making; Sustainable and Resilient Cities; the Nexus of Energy, Water and Food Security; Sustainable Commodities; and Multilateral Agreements (MEAs) and the Post-2015 Framework. In addition, on 30 May, delegates visited four nearby GEF projects.
During the meetings, many participants welcomed the record sixth replenishment to the GEF and also highlighted that the GEF must: position itself in the context of the evolving climate finance architecture; address the underlying causes of environmental degradation; take an integrated approach; and become more efficient, including through programmatic approaches.
Among the decisions taken by the Assembly was the agreement to amend the Instrument for the Establishment of the Restructured Global Environment Facility (GEF/A.5/09). The Assembly agreed to replace the focal areas on ozone depleting substances and persistent organic pollutants with a single “chemicals and waste” focal area, update eligibility criteria, add the Minamata Convention on Mercury to the list of MEAs that the GEF supports, and incorporate the Independent Evaluation Office as one of the bodies of the institution.
Finally, the Mexican President, Enrique Peña Nieto, announced that his country would double its contribution to the GEF to 20 million dollars between 2014-18. [IISD RS coverage of fifth meeting of the GEF Assembly and 46th meeting of the GEF Council] [GEF Assembly website][IISD RS Policy & Practice coverage of GEF] [CITES Press Release] [GEF Press Release on Mexican contribution]