The Adaptation Fund at a Crossroads

During the COP 20 in Lima, as Parties to the UNFCCC struggled to set parameters for a post-2020 climate agreement, its legal status and the institutional arrangements needed to implement ambitious climate actions, an expert discussion under Chatham House rules jointly organized by the Heinrich Böll Stiftung North America and the European Capacity Building Initiative (ecbi) on December 7, 2014, deliberated the future of the Kyoto Protocol Adaptation Fund in a new competitive environment that includes the Green Climate Fund (GCF) as a muscled and now well-resourced player in multilateral climate finance pursuing the COP’s mandate from Durban to channel “a significant part of multilateral adaptation finance.”

A shortfall of sustainable, adequate and predictable financing threatens the long-term viability and the innovative legacy of the Adaptation Fund, which began its operations in 2008, pioneered direct access for national implementing entities (NIEs), provides full cost grant financing for concrete developing country-owned adaptation projects and is governed by a Board with equitable representation between developed and developing country members, given developing countries the majority on the Board.  The Adaptation Fund has now 44 projects worth US$265 million under implementation through 17 national, 4 regional and 11 multilateral accredited implementing entities.

The second review of the Adaptation Fund by the Conference of the Parties serving as meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP) with discussions in June and a decision in December 2014 zeroed thus in on fundraising scenarios and options as well as possible institutional linkages of the Fund with entities under the UNFCCC Financial Mechanism as a way to secure the Fund’s future.  With the GCF set to become the main multilateral fund for climate finance (as intended in the GCF’s Governing Instrument, which also mandates that the GCF operates in complementarity and coherence with existing funding mechanisms), the Adaptation Fund and its Board and Secretariat is tasked to consider the most appropriate institutional arrangements between the AF and the GCF.

The expert discussion in Lima discussed the pros and cons of three possible scenarios regarding the future relationship between the AF and the GCF. The Adaptation Fund Board is scheduled to take up the matter again at its meeting in April 2015.

For the ecbi presentation from Lima, please click here.

For the COP/CMP decision on the second review of the Adaptation Fund, please click here.

Product details
Date of Publication
March 2015
Number of Pages
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