WWF-GEF: News

2024

Coral reef

Investing in trees for the future of musical instruments

  • Date: 08 January 2024

Bob Taylor is the founder of Taylor Guitars, one of the largest manufacturers of acoustic guitars in the United States. In an interview, he shared the reasons his company is working with the Global Environment Facility through The Ebony Project to invest in the socially responsible and environmentally sustainable model of sourcing Central African ebony trees.

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2023

Coral reef

COP28 Side event on Reporting Nepal’s Mitigation Efforts: Road to Net-Zero Emission

  • Date: 05 December 2023

Ministry of Forests and Environment together with GEF and WWF organized a side event on Reporting Nepal’s Mitigation Efforts: Road to Net-Zero Emission at Nepal pavilion, UAE. In the event, Hon. Dr. Birendra Prasad Mahato, Minister, Ministry of Forests and Environment shared the Nepal’s statement on Nepal’s mitigation effort and report communication internationally. He highlighted the targets included on the Nepal’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). The NDCs are an activities-based and policy target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from key sectors such as energy (Transport, energy generation, and e-cooking), agriculture, forestry and land use, and waste.

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Coral reef

WWF GEF Project Coral Reef Rescue Resilient Coral Reefs, Resilient Communities launches a Massive Open Online Learning Course

  • Date: 25 October 2023

The University of Queensland has launched an online edX course ‘Coral Reefs: Introduction of Challenges and Solutions’ designed in partnership with the Coral Reef Rescue Initiative, and WWF Australia, and funded by the Global Environment Facility.

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Fisherman on one of the many small islands off the northern coast of West Java, in the Sunda street, Indonesia

“Be a friend to the ocean” Message from an Indigenous Fisher in Indonesia

  • Date: 6 June 2023

Yustus Menarbu, 37, is a member of the Roon Indigenous community and a traditional fisherman from the coastal village of Menarbu in Indonesia.

Like the rest of the 238 people who live in his village, Yustus and his wife and their nine children depend on artisanal fishing for their food and livelihoods.

Yustus and his wife fish for red snapper using hand lines, a method which has minimal environmental impact.

“I am proud to be a fisherman,” says Yustus, who also serves as chairman of the Village-Owned Enterprise (BUMKA, in its Indonesian acronym).

“I have participated in protecting the natural resources in this village since 2017, and as BUMKA chair, I also care for the community from the business and marketing point of view.”

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2021

Pacific island overhead

Safeguarding Melanesian fishing communities against climate threats

  • Date: 10 August 2021

Those who live on the islands and atolls of the southwestern Pacific Ocean are exposed to rising seas and severe storms like almost no one else on Earth, and yet only a fraction are insured against the growing threat of climate change-related ecosystem, human, and economic losses.

A new initiative from WWF and the global advisory, broking, and solutions company Willis Towers Watson, with support from the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF), aims to close this gap through the creation of new insurance and financial products designed to protect fishing communities in Fiji and Papua New Guinea.

The two countries, which along with the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and New Caledonia, comprise the region of Melanesia, lie in the eastern half of what is known as the Coral Triangle, an ecosystem that teems with marine biodiversity.

It is no surprise, then, that their populations depend heavily on fishing and coastal ecosystems for both food and income. Small-scale fisheries are particularly important. The Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that between 250,000 and 500,000 Papua New Guineans and half of Fiji’s rural households rely upon subsistence fishing – 10 to 20 times the number employed by commercial operations.

And while they are among the world’s smallest emitters of carbon dioxide, the islands of Melanesia face both acute and chronic threats from climate change.

WWF and Willis Towers Watson chose to focus on Fiji and Papua New Guinea in their venture because of the two nations’ exceptional vulnerability to climate change and its threats to coastal livelihoods. Since each country had a different risk profile, they also offered scope to explore a range of financial products through the new initiative.

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A landslide in 
 Nepal

Enabling Nepal to defend a vulnerable watershed

  • Date: 29 June 2021

Nepal’s steep topography and melting glaciers makes it vulnerable to many climate change-induced hazards, including floods, landslides, and debris flows, with impacts seen in mountains, hills, and valleys alike. These fragile and beautiful ecosystems are also now facing new pressures from large numbers of people returning to the country during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rural communities have taken in hundreds of thousands of Nepalis who lost foreign jobs when the coronavirus struck. Those jobs were previously the source of remittances that supported family farms that are already struggling in the face of floods, droughts, and landslides linked to a warming climate.

A new project supported by the GEF-managed Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) and implemented by WWF-US is enabling the Government of Nepal to invest in protecting the Marin watershed while bolstering the longer-term resilience of local and indigenous communities against climate emergencies.

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Two outstretched hands full of recently harvested Palm fruit

WWF and South Pole launch new climate resilience fund

  • Date: 10 June 2021

Zurich, Switzerland – WWF and South Pole today launched the Landscape Resilience Fund (LRF) to tackle the impact of climate change head-on. With the support of the Global Environment Facility and the commitment of Chanel as anchor investor, the fund is ready to rally more institutions to invest in a resilient future.

The LRF, which will be managed by South Pole, was co-developed by South Pole and WWF. The new fund is an independent non-profit foundation under Swiss law and is driven by the objective to generate the maximum possible level of environmental and social impact. Anchor investor Chanel is committing USD 25 million to complement finance from the Global Environment Facility’s Least Developed Countries Fund and Special Climate Change Fund.

The LRF aims to mobilize USD 100 million by 2025 for climate adaptation projects that support more sustainable agricultural and forestry supply chains and that protect smallholder farmers in developing countries. Smallholders produce roughly 80% of global food supply. They play a critical role in ensuring the resilience of corporate value chains against external shocks. They are also the most exposed to the natural hazards of a warming world, putting entire economies in peril and risking the breakdown of global food supplies.”

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Cluster of fishing boats

World-wide task force unites to preserve coastal fisheries and marine resources

  • Date: 22 February 2021

The Coastal Fisheries Initiative (CFI) convenes this week for a brainstorming session aimed at accelerating environmental, social, and economic sustainability in coastal fisheries as communities around the globe strive to face-off the strains of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The central themes of the event include fisheries governance and improvements of value chains, which are reeling from the global health emergency that has hit the fisheries industry hard, sparking major disruptions in supply and demand.

Long-standing business plans for sustainable fisheries and the promotion of cross-sector investment opportunities are at the helm of the week-long talks between partners advocating for the world’s coastal communities, including Indonesia.

“The CFI is in its early stages in Indonesia and our target is to increase the economic and social value of the sector while empowering those groups reliant on coastal fisheries to safeguard their own lives and livelihoods by employing productive management methodologies,” said World Wide Fund for Nature’s (WWF) Senior Program Officer Heike Lingertat.

Indonesia is the world’s second largest fisheries producer after China, generating millions of dollars in annual exports. Yet those benefits come at tremendous risk from factors such as unsustainable fishing methods, she added: “Indonesia has embraced an Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries Management (EAFM), but significant resources are still needed to develop the tools that will ensure the sustainability of the country’s fishing and marine resources.”

Indonesia is one of the countries covered by the CFI’s Challenge Fund, which operates in Cabo Verde, Ecuador and Peru as well, and aims to engage businesses and the financing community in making coastal fisheries more sustainable and productive.

Led by the World Bank, the Challenge Fund is working to make the connection between business and fishing communities, as well as government and investors. When the interests of all those parties are aligned, they have the power to improve coastal fish resources, to enhance the wellbeing of communities and boost local and national economies.

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2020

Rhino

Government of Nepal launches new Integrated Landscape Management Project

  • Date: 17 January 2020

Kathmandu, Nepal – The Ministry of Forests and Environment launched the Integrated Landscape Management to Secure Nepal’s Protected Areas and Critical Corridors (ILaM) at an event in Kathmandu today. The USD 6.6 million (NRS. 726 million) project will be implemented in the Terai Arc Landscape for a period of five years.

With the aim to build national capacity and an enabling environment for cross-sectoral coordination to promote forest and landscape conservation, the project will facilitate integrated planning for Protected Area Buffer Zones and Critical Corridors, and support sustainable management of forests in the Terai Arc Landscape. A key focus in this endeavor will be placed on human-wildlife conflict mitigation and the adoption of social safeguards for indigenous and marginalized communities. The project is financed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), with WWF-US acting as the project implementation agency and WWF-Nepal as its local counterpart.

In his address at the event, Honourable Shakti Bahadur Basnet, Minister, Ministry of Forests and Environment, Government of Nepal said, “We will bring similar projects in the Natural Resource Management Sector in the future to enhance the livelihood of local communities and in turn, the country.”

Dr. Bishwa Nath Oli, Secretary, Ministry of Forests and Environment, Government of Nepal stated that, “This is a unique opportunity to apply the three-tiered government structure in sustainable conservation of biodiversity, serving as a precedent for future landscape level conservation approaches.”

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2019

GEF Challenge Program Update

  • Date: 10 December 2019

In collaboration with partners South Pole and Willis Towers Watson, The World Wildlife Fund has won two projects in the GEF Challenge Program for Adaptation Innovation.

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Rice paddies

The LDN technical assistance facility is open for applications!

  • Date: 09 May 2019

The WWF GEF Agency is overseeing the execution of a $2 Million GEF grant to the Technical Assistance Facility (TAF) of the Land Degradation Neutrality Fund (LDNF). We are delighted to announce that…

Investments in sustainable land management practices are needed to avoid, reduce and reverse land degradation. The Land Degradation Neutrality Fund, co-promoted by the UNCCD, is a first-of-its-kind fund investing in profit-generating sustainable land management and land restoration projects that contribute to SDG 15.3. However, project preparedness can be a major bottleneck for Sustainable Land Management investment.

The LDN technical assistance facility (TAF), managed by IDH, helps to alleviate this bottleneck. The LDN TAF can provide grants and reimbursable grants to investment projects that have potential to be invested into by the LDN fund, and be investment-ready within 24 months. Pre-investment TA can focus on enhancing technical, operational and financial design and structures, as well as support project preparedness support related to broader social and environmental impact.

In order to be eligible for LDN TAF pre-investment support, a project needs to demonstrate it meets the LDN TAF eligibility criteria, and pass through the five stage application process.

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2018

Amazon sunset

Patrimonio del Peru featured at Forests, Food and Land Day during the Global Climate Action Summit

  • Date: 17 September 2018

The Government of Peru, along with the Global Environment Facility, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and World Wildlife Fund, introduced their efforts to secure large scale, long-term climate investments for forest conservation in the Peruvian Amazon. This program, known as Patrimonio del Peru, will result in improved management of 16.7m ha in 38 protected areas in the Peruvian Amazon by 2028, safeguarding 23% of Peru’s total Amazon carbon stock (6.7b tons of CO2eq), and sequestering more than 40m tons CO2e annually. The improved management includes activities to increase participation in management by Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities, and 10 of the Protected Areas are Communal Reserves, which are areas designated for the conservation of flora and fauna specifically for the benefit of Indigenous communities. Patrimonio del Peru is supported through a WWF-GEF Project, Securing the Future of Peru’s Protected Areas, which is currently in implementation, led by SERNANP.

This warm and dynamic conversation between Hon. Fabiola Muñoz Dodero, Minister of Environment of Peru, Harvey Fineberg of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and Naoko Ishii of the Global Environment Facility, moderated by Carter Roberts of World Wildlife Fund, underscored the amplified conservation and climate impacts countries could achieve by working closely with partners. Hon. Fabiola Muñoz Dodero spoke to the need for partners to support country outcomes. “Working with partners is an opportunity for us to identify new options, it’s the best way to move forward and show what’s possible.” However, the participants also underscored the importance of country leadership in realizing similar initiatives. Speaking to his organization’s experience, Carter Roberts stated, “What I’ve learned through this work is that every country is different, every version is different, but every case relies on leadership and partnership.”

Both Harvey Fineberg and Naoko Ishii underscored the overall importance of the success of Patrimonio del Peru for the Amazon region. Mr. Fineberg reminded the audience that it is in Peru where you have both the headwaters of the Amazon River and the rainforest, “and if you can deal with the protection needs for both there is no better place to engage than Peru.” Ms. Ishii, speaking to the nature of the financial mechanism which undergirds the program, remarked, “This is a prudent model for us to address a challenge that the Amazon is now facing. We are very much in.” The session concluded with reiterations of support, and excitement for the next stages of the process.

Manas waterfalls

Manas River Basin PIF Approved

  • Date: 08 August 2018

The Manas River Basin (located in the Himalayas) PIF was approved at the 54th GEF Council which took place in June.

People sitting in meeting

WWF Participated in the 6th GEF Assembly June 23-29, 2018 Vietnam

  • Date: 13 June 2018

The Sixth GEF Assembly and Associated Meetings took place at the Furama International Conference Center in Da Nang, Viet Nam, from June 23-29, 2018.

The GEF Assembly is the governing body of the GEF and is composed of all 183 member countries. It meets every four years at the ministerial level to review general policies; review and evaluate the GEF’s operation based on reports submitted to Council; review the membership of the Facility; and consider, for approval by consensus, amendments to the Instrument for the Establishment of the Restructured Global Environment Facility on the basis of recommendations by the GEF Council (read more on the GEF Partnership).

In the same week other events took place:

  • 15 Constituency Meetings
  • 54th GEF Council Meeting and the 24th LDCF/SCCF Council Meeting – NB: Access to Council meetings is restricted but the event is web streamed on the GEF website.
  • GEF Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel Meeting
  • Civil society organizations (CSOs) Forum – The forum provides a platform for CSOs and other stakeholders to dialogue on issues relating to global environment and the future of the GEF; to showcase and foster mutual learning of civil society innovations in safeguarding the global environment; to formulate specific recommendations related to enhancing CSO engagement in the GEF.

WWF hosted 4 side events during the assembly:

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2017

Global Wildlife Program Featured

  • Date: 28 November 2017

See the World Bank feature story “Act now to save wildlife: 5 actions that make a difference.” The Global Wildlife Program is led by the World Bank and funded by the GEF. Collaborative partners include the International Consortium to Combat Wildlife Crime (ICCWC) including the CITES Secretariat, International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Traffic, WildAid, Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), and WWF.

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Danube sturgeon

Danube River Hydromorphology PIF approved

  • Date: 30 October 2017

The Danube River Hydromorphology PIF was approved at the 53rd GEF Council on October 30, 2017. Full project development will begin shortly.

Sheep grazing

LDNF Technical Assistance Facility PIF Approved

  • Date: 05 October 2017

The WWF GEF Project “Land Degradation Neutrality Fund Technical Assistance Facility” PIF was approved October 3, 2017. The Project will start full project development for submission within 12 months.

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Forest and mountains

Safeguarding land and lives in Nepal’s fragile Churia

  • Date: 24 July 2017

Kathmandu, Nepal – ‘Sustainable Land Management in the Churia Range, Nepal’, a three-year medium-sized project of the Government of Nepal and WWF and supported by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) was successfully concluded on 31 May 2017. It effectively helped reduce the vulnerability of 6,000 local people, including more than 2,300 women, from land degradation and soil erosion issues in the Himalayan foothills.

This maiden initiative in Nepal, following the accreditation of WWF as Global Environment Facility (GEF) project agency, introduced an integrated land management approach in the fragile Churia, a hilly range which covers about 13% of Nepal’s total area and more than 15% of the country’s population.

The Churia is an important recharge zone of ground water that feeds agricultural land and forests of the Terai, home to iconic species such as tigers and rhinos; however, deforestation, over-grazing by livestock, unsustainable agricultural practices and climate change impacts have deteriorated the Churia.

Initiated in February 2014, the project worked towards empowering local communities to sustainably manage the Churia range in four Village Development Committees in the districts of Makawanpur, Parsa, Bara and Rautahat in central Nepal.

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Tiger facing camera

Nepal Integrated Land Management Project Approved by GEF Council

  • Date: 25 May 2017

The project “Integrated Landscape Management to Secure Nepal’s Protected Areas and Critical Corridors” has achieved CEO Approval at the 52nd Meeting of the GEF Council held in Washington, DC May 23-25.

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Fisherman on canoe

CFI-Indonesia reaches CEO Endorsement

  • Date: 10 May 2017

The child project “Indonesia: Eco-system Approach to Fisheries Management (EAFM) in Eastern Indonesia,” under the Coastal Fisheries Initiative program, has achieved CEO Endorsement.

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Reef

Integrated Transboundary Ridge-to-Reef Management of the Mesoamerican Reef reaches CEO Endorsement

  • Date: 05 April 2017

The WWF GEF Project “Integrated Transboundary Ridge-to-Reef Management of the Mesoamerican Reef ” has reached CEO endorsement.

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Palm oil plantation

Commodities Demand Project achieves CEO Endorsement

  • Date: 27 January 2017

The Child Project “Generating Responsible Demand for Reduced-Deforestation Commodities” has achieved CEO Endorsement. Implementation of activities will begin mid 2017.

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2016

Mangroves

Project on Mangroves in Eastern Tropical Pacific reaches CEO Approval

  • Date: 18 July 2016

The project “Improving Mangrove Conservation across the Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape (ETPS) through Coordinated Regional and National Strategy Development and Implementation” has achieved CEO Approval.

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Shore fishing in Madagascar

PIF on Protected Areas in Madagascar Approved by GEF Council

  • Date: 09 June 2016

The Program “Sustainable Management of Madagascar’s Marine Resources” has been approved by the GEF Council. ProDoc development is now beginning for submission by June 30, 2018.

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2015

Monkey in tree

PFD for “Amazon Sustainable Landscapes Program” Cleared

  • Date: 14 September 2015

The PFD “Amazon Sustainable Landscapes Program” has been cleared. ProDoc development for the WWF-GEF Child Project Securing the Future of Peru’s Protected Areas is beginning for submission June 30, 2017.

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Fish underwater

Coastal Fisheries Initiative PFD Cleared

  • Date: 28 April 2015

The “Coastal Fisheries Initiative” has been cleared. The ProDoc for the WWF-GEF Child Project Eco-system Approach to Fisheries Management (EAFM) in Eastern Indonesia (Fisheries Management Area (FMA) – 715, 717 & 718) will begin development.

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