Mexico ratifies its commitment to the environment and will double funds for the GEF
President Enrique Peña Nieto announces the country will raise 20 million dollars for the 2014-2018 period
Mexico’s commitment to the environment was endorsed last night with President Enrique Peña Nieto’s presence, announcing that the country’s contribution to the Global Environment Facility (GEF) will double to 20 million dollars between 2014-18.
“With the support of the Facility, we want to increase cooperation in favor of increased global responsibility: caring for and preserving our planet,” the President confirmed after participating int the 5th GEF Assembly which is taking place this week in Cancun.
The Head of State, claimed that the GEF’s 5th Assembly is an opportunity to “reaffirm the country’s commitment with the world to really make this planet a better space, where humanity can live and have fun.”
The CEO and Chairperson of the GEF, Naoko Ishii highlighted the role of Mexico in the fight to preserve the environment: “Mexico clearly recognizes that there can be no separation between the environment and the economy. A healthy environment is a necessary condition for long term sustainable development.”
An in this sense, the President of the GEF recognised Mexico’s advances regarding the environment: it was one of the first countries in the world to pass a general law on climate change. it is reforming its domestic energy markets; its investments in renewable energy has been one of the highest in the world; and what’s more it has set very ambitious targets for expanding its already large protected areas.
“It is very clear to me that Mexico’s decision to double its contribution to the GEF was the key that opened the door for many other donors, including Mexico’s fellow emerging economies,” said Naoko Ishii, emphasizing the Mexican leadership last month in the GEF’s replenishment, which reached a record US$4.43 billion.
Mexico is a founding member of the GEF and since 1991 has received funding for more than 54 national and 32 regional projects for biodiversity conservation, to fight climate change and persistent organic pollutants among others.
During his speech to the Assembly, the Mexican President talked of the current challenges along with the institutional transformation processes that his country is facing, with structural reforms in education, finance, economic competitiveness, telecommunications, budgets and energy.
He assured that the reforms which Mexico are undertaking will speed up economic growth while also reaffirming their global responsibility to the environment.
“The objective of all [the reforms] is to turn Mexico into a more prosperous country, with higher levels of economic growth. We are working decisively to achieve sustained, and more importantly, sustainable economic expansion. In other words, green growth,” he affirmed.
During the dinner in honour of the 150 delegations which attended the meeting, Peña Nieto wished that the 5th Assembly achieve the organization’s founding aim: “to combine the efforts of the whole world, of those countries focused on a better tomorrow and a better future for the world, to provide the opportunity to strengthen this shared effort and to commit ourselves to the environment and the preservation of our planet.”
Mexico has supported the consolidation of the Global Environmental Facility, but at the same time has been widely backed by this global initiative: the Facility has donated more than US$450 million to Mexico and an additional 2.69 billion dollars have been award through various financing schemes.
Some of the most important projects financed by the GEF in Mexico include:
* The Sian Ka’an biosphere reserve in Quintana Roo, which helped to conserve its forests, mangroves and wetlands along with its archaeological remains as well as integrating sustainable fisheries protections.
* The Monarch Butterfly, Chincua Mountain and Rosario Mountain biosphere reserves in Michoacan, where they established economic incentives for common lands, indigenous communities and small property owners to protect the seasonal home of the Monarch Butterfly.
* The El Pinacate and Gran Desierto de Altar en Sonora biosphere reserve: with it’s huge cultural riches, it is one of the most biodiverse deserts in the world.
Mr. Christian Hofer
Senior Communications Officer
Phone: +1 202 458 0936