Adaptation Fund Board meeting
The Adaptation Fund Board meeting
Short description. From October 31 – November 1, 2013, the Adaptation Fund Board (AFB) convened its 22nd meeting in Bonn, Germany. As a major achievement, the Board adopted the revised Environmental and Social Policy (ESP) that was first discussed at the previous meeting. In addition to that, a programme for readiness and preparatory support was approved, to support National and Regional Implementing Entities (NIEs and RIEs), during the accreditation process and the subsequent development of project proposals. As for new projects and programmes, it was decided to approve three project concepts (Costa Rica, Jordan and Indonesia) as well as two fully developed project proposals (Rwanda and Nepal). Furthermore, the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) was accredited as a new RIE. Finally, the Board elected Mr Mamadou Honadia (Burkina Faso) as the new Chair of the AFB.
On October 31st and November 1st, 2013 the Adaptation Fund (AF) Board convened its 22nd meeting in Bonn, Germany. Two days prior to the meeting, members of the two committees of the Board, the Ethics and Finance Committee (EFC) and the Project and Programme Review Committee (PPRC) met for the 13th time. On October 30th, in the margins of the committee meetings, the Board held its regular Civil Society Dialogue.
Besides procedural matters, such as the adoption of the agenda and the date and venue of the first Board meeting in 2014, Board members engaged in substantial discussions in the course of the meeting. From a policy perspective, it is important to highlight the adoption of the fund’s Environmental and Social Policy (ESP) as well as options for a programme for readiness and preparatory support. Both decisions mark a milestone and better position of the AF among other climate funds.
The purpose of an ESP is to ensure that the AF will not fund projects that may derive in unintended harms for the beneficiaries. For the last years the AF has been applying environmental and social safeguards at the project level, mostly through a screening process of project proposals. The adoption of the ESP will from now on help the AF to also streamline, complete and integrate robust and comprehensive safeguards into its current policies and guidelines.
Besides, Board members discussed options for a programme to support readiness for direct access. The intention behind this is, on the one hand, to take action on the slow progress and the number of NIE accreditations and on the other hand to address the difficulty of national and regional entities, once accredited, to submit promising high quality projects to the AF. In the discussion, several Board members proposed to focus the readiness programme on those countries that are seeking support in getting their institutions accredited, rather than on already accredited institutions.
As an outcome of their prior meetings, the commitees of the Board, i.e the EFC and the PPRC, presented their reports during the meeting, as did the Accreditation Panel (AP). The report by the EFC comprised, inter alia, the Annual Performance Report of the AF for 2013, an update on the work on results tracking initiated at the previous committee meeting. It also featured a short introduction to the financial status of the AF Trust Fund that was further complemented by an official report from the trustee (World Bank). According to the trustee, as of September 30th, 2013, USD 342 million have been received on part by proceeds of sales of Certified Emission Reductions (CERs) and contributions by donor countries. Considering previous funding decisions of approx. USD 190 million and operational costs of the AF, thus brings available resources for future resource allocation to amount to 117 million. The report was followed by a discussion on the fundraising strategy of the AF, however in closed session.
With regard to the report of the AP, and as recommended therein, the Board decided to grant accreditation to the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), making it the third Regional Implementing Entity of the AF. In addition, the Board decided to adopt a proposed procedure for a reaccreditation process, providing clarity on steps to be taken when accreditation of an implementing entity expires after five years (as stated in the Operational Guidelines and Policies of the AF).
The PPRC report provided the Board with findings of the project review process, recommending the endorsement of three project concepts (Costa Rica, Jordan and Indonesia) and two fully developed project proposals (Rwanda and Nepal). The project for Rwanda was submitted by the country’s Ministry of Natural Resources, representing yet another NIE project to achieve approval by the Board. The total number of NIE projects now adds up to five. As fairly usual, the Board decided to follow the recommendations of the PPRC.
Due to the fact that the funding window for projects by Multilateral Implementing Entities (MIEs) has already been exhausted (limited to 50% of total resources received), the approved and fully developed project proposal by the World Food Programme on behalf of Nepal was added to the MIE pipeline that has now grown to eight projects – requesting a total of around USD 58 million.
Building on this, the Board exchanged views on options for funding the MIE pipeline. These where based on the report by the chair of the Fund’s Project and the PPRC, where the issue was also touched upon. After some discussion, which also entailed deliberations of closing the MIE pipeline to future MIE proposals or even allowing for a temporary loosening of the 50/50 cap, the Board decided to request the secretariat to develop a document analysing the implications that would result from each of the proposed options, also incorporating intersessional comments and reflections by Board members and alternates.
Besides the rather political discussion on the current status of the pipeline, the secretariat presented new information and outreach material as part of the AF’s communication strategy, especially in light of the upcoming Conference of the Parties (COP) in Warsaw where the AF will maintain a booth to display its materials. The secretariat therefore gave a brief overview of the activities of the AF during the COP, particularly alluding to the AF side-event on Friday, November 15th, 2013 titled “Adaptation Stories: Lessons Learned”. The parting chair of the AF, Mr. Hans-Olav Ibrekk will deliver the mandatory report of the AF to the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP) on Tuesday, November 12th, 2013.
Finally, the Board elected new officials of its Committees and its Accreditation Panel, as well as its Chair and Vice-Chair. Accordingly, the Board selected Mr. Mamadou Honadia (Burkina Faso) as the new Chair of the AF Board, Ms. Su-Lin Garbett-Shiels (United Kingdom) as Chair of the Ethics and Finance Committee, Ms. Angela Churie-Kallhauge (Sweden) as Chair of the AP and Mr. Philip Weech (Bahamas) as Vice-Chair of the AP. Following the ninth session of the CMP in Warsaw, the remaining officials will be elected intersessionally.