The Green Climate Fund is moving closer to financing its first projects and programs. If things are done the right way it could contribute effectively to global efforts to counter climate change, but first transparency in the decision making process needs to be guaranteed.
In July, the tenth meeting of the Green Climate Fund management board was held in Songdo, Korean Republic. Important steps were taken towards the implementation of the institution. However, moments of great tension were also experienced, especially during the accreditation process of new entities by the Fund.
The management board decided to grant accreditation to a batch of 13 new national, regional and international entities. And they did this although civil society asked them not to choose this adoption method as it doesn’t allow the board to review each application thoroughly nor does it allow the accreditation review panel to question the decision to recommend entities. Observers warned that if this process were to be followed, the Fund’s reputation would be at risk.
Since the board’s ninth meeting the decision making process used to grant accreditation to new entities has lacked transparency. The applicants’ names aren’t revealed until the board has granted them accreditation. This makes it difficult for the observers to give inputs on the applications. Furthermore, the information on the entities’ track records comes from the entities themselves and not from a third party, so it lacks objectivity.
Similarly, the majority of recommended entities applied for accreditation by the Fund for class A programs and projects, which are considered as high risk projects in that they can cause irreversible and negative social and environmental impacts.
On the other hand, the Fund claimed that the applications are accepted on a first-come first-serve basis. In this regard, they are not selected in such a way to ensure a balance in the kind of entities, their nature and their risk management capacity.
Accepting applications on a first-come first-serve basis is not the best way for an institution which aims not only at fighting climate change but also at fostering sustainable development and achieving co-benefits in the implementation of the programs and projects financed.
Since the board’s ninth meeting the decision making process used to grant accreditation to new entities has lacked transparency.
The accreditation was only one of the issues on the table of the meeting in Songdo but it was very important since the entities accredited will be the channel through which developing countries submit their programs and projects propositions in order to receive financial support from the Fund.
With 20 entities accredited until now the Green Fund is moving closer to starting its operations. Its goal is to demonstrate that it is different from other existing entities and that its operations can promote climate-resilient sustainable development while reducing emissions. A set of conditions must still be guaranteed to ensure successful operations.
The next board meeting will be held in Zambia from 4 to 6 November, right before COP21. We hope that the board will approve the funding of the first projects and programs propositions.
By Andrea Rodriguez Osuna,
Senior lawyer of the Climate Change Program of the Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (AIDA)
Created in 1998, AIDA is an international non-profit organization which uses the law to protect the environment on the American continent.
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