The Global Environment Facility (GEF), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) today announced their commitment to fast-track support to governments to prepare for the rapid implementation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. The new framework will be adopted by the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in May 2022 at the conclusion of its fifteenth meeting. Urgent action will be needed to jumpstart its implementation at the scale that the current loss of biodiversity requires.
The ongoing negotiations for the 8th replenishment of the GEF have included a promising discussion on the need for a significant increase in biodiversity financing for the next funding cycle (2022-2026) to help countries respond to the ambition of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. The GEF-8 programming directions strategy has outlined an ambitious plan to help countries meet the new biodiversity targets.
In recognition of the urgency of this moment, and to prepare for that investment, the GEF, in partnership with UNDP and UNEP, will provide immediate financial and technical support to developing country governments drawing from GEF-7 enabling activity resources in the biodiversity focal area. The GEF’s support is designed to help accelerate implementation of the new framework once it is formally agreed next year at COP-15.
Through this initiative, the GEF will support countries to conduct a rapid review of the alignment of existing national biodiversity strategies and action plans (NBSAPs) with the new framework in order to identify key areas that will need to be updated and refined in light of the new global framework and targets, including support to engage key stakeholders in the review process to ensure a whole of society approach and to reduce obstacles in implementation. This review process will aim to ensure continuous implementation of biodiversity goals and targets during and after the review. Activities envisioned in the fast-track support include a review and identification of opportunities around policy coherence and biodiversity mainstreaming across national policy, assessments of national monitoring systems, and analyses of biodiversity finance, including possible innovative mechanisms that could help bridge the financial gap. The support for early action is expected to facilitate rapid implementation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework and allow countries to make effective use of the resources provided through the GEF-8 programming directions to implement key transformative actions to halt biodiversity loss and restore nature.
This work highlights GEF’s responsiveness to a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make biodiversity a high priority for the global community setting it on a path to place it on a par with climate change as the two key global environmental priorities.