Climate Change Negotiations – UNFCCC, COP, Other Conventions and Protocols

67th Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council meet


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: 67th Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council

Why in the News?

  • The 67th meeting of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) was recently held in Washington DC. It concluded with the approval of $736.4 million in funding for 34 nature protection and renewal projects.

About Global Environment Facility (GEF) 

  • A pilot program in 1991 by the World Bank
  • Restructured after the 1992 Rio Earth Summit.
Objective Grants and blended finance for environmental projects
  • Over $1 billion annually; $22 billion grants to date
  • World Bank serves as the GEF Trustee
Replenishment $5.33 billion pledged for 2022-2026
Member Countries 184 countries
Main Governing Bodies
  • Assembly: Composed of all 184 member countries, meets every 3-4 years at ministerial level. Reviews policies, and operations, and approves amendments.
  • Council: Main governing body with 32 members from member countries (14 developed, 16 developing, 2 economies in transition). Meets biannually to develop policies, approve projects, and evaluate operations.
    • India, Bhutan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Bangladesh have together formed a Permanent Constituency in the Executive Council of the GEF.
  • Secretariat: Based in Washington, D.C., reports to Council and Assembly, oversees project implementation and policy adherence.
  • STAP (Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel): Provides scientific advice on policies, strategies, and projects, consisting of six internationally recognized experts.
  • GEF IEO (Independent Evaluation Office): Reports to the Council, evaluates GEF’s impact and effectiveness, and shares best practices and lessons learned.
Operational Agencies 18 agencies including UNDP, UNEP, World Bank
Financial Mechanism for
  • Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) (1994)
  • United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) (1991)
  • United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) (1994)
  • Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (2001)
  • Minamata Convention on Mercury (2013)
  • Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (1987)
Focus Areas Biodiversity, Climate Change (Mitigation & Adaptation), Chemicals & Waste, International Waters, Land Degradation, Sustainable Forest Management
Additional Initiatives Circular Economy, Capacity Development, Debt-for-Nature Swaps, Gender Equality, Indigenous Peoples

Outcomes of the 67th GEF Council Meeting

[1] Funding Approval:

  • A total of $736.4 million was approved for 34 projects worldwide.
  • These projects span various environmental sectors and include initiatives under the GEF Trust Fund, Global Biodiversity Framework Fund (GBFF), Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), and a Multi-Trust Fund project.

[2] GBFF Initiatives:

  • The GBFF approved its first work programme, allocating $37.8 million specifically for enhancing protected area management in Brazil and Mexico.
  • This initiative aims to support sustainable practices across more than 30 million hectares of protected areas, with a focus on indigenous-led conservation efforts.

[3] GEF Trust Fund Projects:

Several projects were funded under the GEF Trust Fund, including:

  1. Sustainable Cities Integrated Program.
  2. Initiatives targeting chemical and waste pollution in Bolivia’s cement, textile, brick, and glass sectors, as well as Brazil’s cement industry.

[4] Projects in India:

India secured funding for two significant projects:

  1. Enhancing biodiversity conservation to meet global targets, focusing on expanding protected areas and community-led conservation practices with a funding of $6.7 million.
  2. Conservation and sustainable management of wetlands, forests, and grasslands along the Central Asian Flyway, receiving $10.7 million.

[5] Global Impact and Targets:

  • Several projects aligned with the Global Biodiversity Framework’s 30X30 target (conservation of 30% of Earth’s land and sea by 2030), including initiatives in Argentina, Central Asia, and Namibia.
  • These projects aim to reduce ecosystem degradation, combat biodiversity loss, and strengthen protected area management.

[6] Future Plans (GEF-9):

  • The Council discussed plans for the ninth replenishment funding cycle (GEF-9) from 2026 to 2030.
  • This period aligns with global environmental goals and targets set under international agreements like the Biodiversity Plan.


[2014] With reference to ‘Global Environment Facility’, which of the following statements is/are correct?

(a) It serves as financial mechanism for ‘Convention on Biological Diversity’ and ‘United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’.

(b) It undertakes scientific research on environmental issues at global level.

(c) It is an agency under OECD to facilitate the transfer of technology and funds to underdeveloped countries with specific aim to protect their environment.

(d) Both (a) and (b).

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