Green Climate Fund: Notes for UPSC Environment and Ecology

The Green Climate Fund (GCF) is a new global fund created by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to support the efforts of developing countries to respond to the challenge of climate change.

This article will talk about the Green Climate Fund (GCF). Environment and climate change are very important topics for UPSC exams. Climate change, resultant natural disasters, loss of biodiversity, etc. are recurring themes in the national and international news. Hence, they assume a lot of significance for the IAS exam and must be focused on by the IAS aspirants.

Latest on Green Climate Fund – GCF

  1. The Green Climate Fund has signed agreements with its partners to implement four new climate initiatives. The projects to strengthen climate action in Liberia, Uzbekistan, Jordan and Congo were given the green light during the GCF Board’s first meeting of the year, which concluded on 20 March.
    • This was the twenty-eighth meeting of GCF Board in which 15 new climate projects totaling USD 7.5 billion were approved including USD 1.2 billion in GCF funding and USD 6.3 billion in co-financing, for low-emission, climate-resilient development.
  2. (GCF) has joined forces with Pegasus Capital Advisors and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in an innovative bundling of public-private financing to plug a funding gap for sub-national climate initiatives. The agreement is about the Global Subnational Climate Fund (SnCF Global), created to address a major deficit in climate finance.  Aspirants can know more about the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) on the linked page.

The candidates can read more related information from the links given below:

What is the Green Climate Fund?

  • The Green Climate Fund (GCF) is the world’s largest environmental fund that seeks to help developing nations in cutting down their greenhouse gas emissions, while at the same time making them adapt suitably to climate change.
  • This is done by supporting projects, programmes, policies and other activities through a state-of-the-art funding window.
  • It was established formally as a financing mechanism by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2010 it is headquartered in the Songdo district in South Korea.
  • The mandate of GCF is to promote a paradigm shift towards low-emission and climate-resilient development pathways by providing support to developing countries to limit or reduce their greenhouse gas emissions (mitigation) and to adapt to the impacts of climate change (adaptation).
  • Given the urgency and seriousness of climate change, the purpose of GCF is to make a significant and ambitious contribution to global efforts towards attaining the goals set by the international community to combat climate change.

To know more about the United Nations Organization, visit the linked article.

Importance of Green Climate Fund

  • Climate change is one of the most pressing concerns of the modern 21st-century era.
  • Its effects as impacted and even altered the planet to a significant extent.
  • Long-term climatic changes on the Earth are of utmost significance.
  • They can have economic, human and geographic consequences if the changes are not reversed or not mitigated at the earliest.
  • There are solutions to mitigate climate change, but they are not financially viable for many developing nations.
  • Hence, the GCF will help bridge this gap by economic means.

Objectives of GCF

  • The Fund will contribute to the achievement of the ultimate objective of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
  • The Fund will be guided by the principles and provisions of the Convention.
  • The Fund will operate in a transparent and accountable manner guided by efficiency and effectiveness.
  • The Fund will play a key role in channelling new, additional, adequate and predictable financial resources to developing countries and will catalyze climate finance, both public and private, and at the international and national levels.
  • The Fund will pursue a country-driven approach and promote and strengthen engagement at the country level through effective involvement of relevant institutions and stakeholders.
  • The Fund will strive to maximize the impact of its funding for adaptation and mitigation, and seek a balance between the two, while promoting environmental, social, economic and development co-benefits and taking a gendersensitive approach.

How does the GCF funding work?

The financial mechanism of the GCF helps in coursing funds from developed to developing countries. The rationale behind this move is to remove inequality between the haves and have-nots. As the fund was established to help developing nations come up with disruptive policies, programmes and projects that would eventually mitigate climate change. Thus it can be said that the fund is a unique global initiative to respond to climate change by researching and funding in efficient green solutions that foster sustainable development.

Green Climate Fund – UPSC Notes:- Download PDF Here

GCF Investment Areas

Mitigation

Reducing emissions from:

  • Energy access and power generation (e.g. on-grid, micro-grid, off-grid solar, wind, geothermal)
  • Transport (e.g. high-speed rail, rapid bus system, etc.)
  • Buildings, cities and industries and appliances (e.g. new & retrofitted energy efficient buildings, energy efficient equipment for companies, supply chain management, etc)
  • Forestry and land use (e.g. forest conservation & management, agroforestry, agricultural irrigation, water treatment & management)

Adaptation

Increasing resilience of:

  • Most vulnerable people and communities (e.g. diversification of supply sources and supply chain management, relocation of manufacturing facilities and warehouses, etc.)
  • Health and well-being, and food and water security (e.g. climate-resilient crops, efficient irrigation systems)
  • Infrastructure and built environment (e.g. sea walls, resilient road networks, etc.)
  • Ecosystem and ecosystem services (e.g. ecosystem conservation and management, ecotourism, etc.)

India and the GFC

From India’s point of view, the establishment of the GCF is noteworthy. The reason being that it was India that led the call with other developing nations in insisting on a setting up of a multilateral mechanism under the auspices of the UNFCCC through the aid provided by developing nations.

The Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has been selected as India’s Nationally Designated Authority (NDA) for the GCF. The MOEFCC will make suggestions on funding proposals for national climate strategies to the controlling board of the GCF.

NABARD has been accredited by GCF as the first Entity for sourcing financial resources from GCF for India.

As of now, the Groundwater Recharge System Installation project in Odisha is the only one in progress with funds collected from the GCF.

Green Climate Fund – Recent Developments

  1. On 22nd July 2020, Green Climate Fund (GCF) and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have agreed to partner toward a “green recovery” for members confronting the harsh economic impact of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. The decision was taken after a meeting between Asian Development Bank President (Masatsugu Asakawa) and Green Climate Fund Executive Director (Yannick Glemarec). The decision will help in creating the necessary institutions, assets and systems. Green Climate Fund has approved a total funding of $ 473 million for 10 Asian Development Bank projects. 
  2. According to the Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the goal is to achieve 40% cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030. This is to be done with the help of Transfer of Technology and Low Cost International Financing including the Green Climate Fund. As per a recent report by Central Electricity Agency, the percentage of non-fossil fuel in India’s electric power installed capacity is estimated to increase to 64 per cent in March 2030. India is taking steps to achieve its INDC targets by setting a target of 450 MW renewable energy target, establishing Solar Parks, introducing innovative technologies, implementing National Smart Grid Mission, creating Green energy corridors.

For more preparation-related articles, visit the following links. You can also find more topics by visiting the UPSC Syllabus page.

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