Wildlife & Biodiversity

Multilateral fund offers $5.33 billion over 4 years to help solve biodiversity woes

The amount offered by the Global Environment Facility is much less than the $60 billion suggested by one non-profit

By Vibha Varshney
Published: Thursday 23 June 2022

The Global Environment Facility, the only multilateral fund focused on biodiversity, has promised to provide $5.33 billion over the next four years to address problems related to biodiversity worldwide, it announced at an information session of the ongoing preparatory meeting on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework meeting in Nairobi.

The amount is 30 per cent more than the last four years. Biodiversity would be the focus area during these years and at least 60 per cent of the commitments will be related to biodiversity, it said.

Read Is India ready for post-2020 global biodiversity framework?

GEF plans to provide the funds to improve food systems, ecosystem restoration, ensuring clean and healthy oceans, climate change mitigation and managing chemicals and waste, among other things. 

The plan is to provide $1 million per country for in-country work and $9 million as global technical assistance.

This would help meet goals. But it is much less than the requirement estimated by Campaign for Nature, a non-profit. They said at a press meet organised June 22, 2022 that at least one per cent of global gross domestic product is needed each year to deal with the biodiversity crisis.

The organisation estimates the requirement to be at least $60 billion each year.

Earlier, a group of countries including Argentina and Brazil and Gabon, called for developed countries to provide at least $100 billion a year, rising to $700 billion per year by 2030.

The world failed to meet the Aichi targets on biodiversity set for 2011-2020, due to lack of adequate financial resources. In 2020, an assessment showed that none of the 20 Aichi targets had been met.

Campaign for Nature asked developed countries to provide funds in the form of grants and not debt and also ensure that indigenous people and local communities had direct access to these resources.

This is important in light of the recent developments where people from Tanzania’s Maasai community are being forcefully evicted from their ancestral land to make way for a luxury game reserve for the rich.

Investing in the environment is important considering that money spent now can help avoid massive future costs that come from the degradation of nature as well as zoonotic diseases and pandemics that can be caused due to the loss of nature.

There is also a need to eliminate subsidies that are harmful to nature. These include subsidies on fishing or promotion of fossil fuels.

The Nairobi meet is being held in preparation for the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CoP15), scheduled for later this year in Montreal, Canada.

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