Green Climate Fund

Summary

The Green Climate Fund (GCF) was adopted as a financial mechanism of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) at the end of 2011. It aims to make an ambitious contribution to attaining the mitigation and adaptation goals of the international community. Over time it is expected to become the main multilateral financing mechanism to support climate action in developing countries.

The board of the GCF met for the first time in August 2012 and its modalities will be agreed throughout 2012 with a goal of making the fund operational by early 2014.

Details on our Data
  • Status of Pledges as of March 2017, available here.
  • Board approved funding proposals current as of May 2017, available here.
  • List of Accredited Agencies, as of 14 October 2016, is available at the bottom of this page.
  • On the 21st May 2015 the Fund reached its threshold with signed contributions equaling 50% of its total pledges. It is now authorized to allocate resources for project implementation. Signed contributions however are not reflected in the charts above as these have not yet been deposited into the Fund.
  • First project approvals: November 2015

Basic Description

Name of Fund Green Climate Fund (GCF)
Official Website http://www.greenclimate.fund
Date created Date fund proposed: December 2009. December 2010 decision to establish the GCF made.

Date fund made operational: The GCF became fully operational in 2015. May 21, 2015 marked the “effectiveness date” of the GCF after the conversion of a pledge from Japan brought the Fund over the 50% threshold of funding promises from the Berlin Pledge Conference converted into signed contribution requirements. The GCF was then able to start allocating its resources.

Proposed Life of Fund The termination of the Fund is not set, but would be required to be approved by the COP based on a recommendation of the Board.
Administrating Organisation The GCF is a legally independent institution with a fully independent secretariat headed by an Executive Secretary. The World Bank serves as the interim trustee of the GCF, and the Fund functions under the guidance of and remains accountable to the UNFCCC Conference of Parties.

Technical experts from the UNFCCC and the GEF comprised an interim secretariat to provide technical, administrative and logistical support to the Board until the independent secretariat of the GCF is established. The Independent Secretariat, located in Songdo South Korea, began its work in December 2013. The Secretariat is currently divided into four units – country programming, mitigation and adaptation, private sector facility, and support services – but a proposed reorganization would place the two mitigation and adaptation divisions and the PSF into portfolio development and portfolio management divisions, respectively.

Objectives The GCF will contribute to the achievement of the ultimate objective of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). In the context of sustainable development, the Fund will promote the paradigm shift towards low-emission and climate-resilient development pathways by providing support to developing countries to limit or reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and to adapt to the impacts of climate change, taking into account the needs of those developing countries particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change. National ownership is intended to be central to the GCF approach.

The Fund will strive to maximize the impact of its funding for adaptation and mitigation, and seek a balance between the two, while promoting environmental, social, economic and development co-benefits and taking a gender-sensitive approach.

Activities Supported The GCF will support projects, programmes, policies and other activities in all developing country parties to the UNFCCC.
The GCF finances activities to both enable and support adaptation, mitigation (including REDD+), technology development and transfer (including CCS), capacity-building and the preparation of national reports.
Countries will also be supported in the pursuit of project-based and programmatic approaches in accordance with strategies and plans (such as low-emission development strategies, Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions, National Adaptation Plans of Action, National Adaptation Plans and others). 
Conditions and Eligibility Requirements The GCF is an operating entity of the UNFCCC’s financial mechanism. Recipient countries can submit funding proposal through National Designated Authorities (NDAs).  Recipient countries will be allowed direct access through accredited sub-national, national and regional implementing entities they propose and set up as long as these implementing entities fulfil certain fiduciary standards.

GCF funds can also be accessed through multilateral implementing entities, such as accredited multilateral development banks and UN agencies. See a current list of accredited implementing entities at the bottom of this page.

A private sector facility will also be established that allows direct and indirect financing by the GCF for private sector activities. National Designated Authorities, which can object to private sector activities, are to ensure that private sector interests are aligned with national climate policies.

Accessing the Fund All developing country Parties to the Convention are eligible to receive resources from the GCF. The GCF gives recipient countries access to funding through accredited national, sub-national and regional implementing entities and intermediaries (including NGOs, government ministries, national development banks, and other domestic or regional organizations that can meet the Fund’s standards). Countries can also access funding through accredited international and regional entities (such as multilateral and regional development banks and UN agencies) under international access. Private sector entities can also be accredited as implementing entities.

Some funds will be distributed through Enhanced Direct Access, in which developing country-based accredited institutions receive an allocation of GCF finance and then make their own decisions on how to program resources. The EDA model differs from other arrangements, in which finance is only accessible through discrete projects and programs approved by the GCF board. In November 2015, the GCF approved USD 169 million for its first eight projects, which included two private sector and two mitigation projects and six public sector projects focusing on adaptation or crosscutting mitigation and adaptation.

Fund Governance

Decision Making Structure
A broad framework and general direction for operationalising the GCF exists in the Governing Instrument approved by COP 17 in Durban and produced by a Transitional Committee (TC), established following COP 16 in Cancun in 2010. The TC was comprised of 25 representatives from developing countries and 15 from developed countries.

The GCF Board of 24 members is comprised of an equal number of representatives from developed and developing countries selected by the UNFCCC regional constituencies. It includes one dedicated seat each for the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDs). Two Co-Chairs of the Board are elected by Board members to serve a period of one-year, with one from a developing country Party and one from a developed country Party.

The World Bank will act as an interim trustee for the first three years of the GCF, functioning under the guidance of and accountable to the COP. A permanent trustee will be selected thereafter in an open and competitive process.

Non-Government Stakeholder Participation Stakeholders are defined in the GCF Governing Instrument as private sector actors, civil society organisations, vulnerable groups, women and Indigenous Peoples.

The governing instrument includes two civil society and two private sector representatives as active observers to all Board Meetings although they will not be able to vote on decisions. The rules for such participation will need to be decided, as will further modalities for stakeholder engagement and participation. The GCFinterim secretariat has invited submissions on modalities for observer participation. The Board has issued initial best practice guidelines and options for country coordination and multi-stakeholder engagement for the Fund. At its 11th meeting, the Board approved an initial monitoring and accountability framework for GCF accredited entities, which highlights an oversight role for National Designated Authority and local stakeholders through participatory monitoring approaches.

Civil society representatives attended the Transitional Committee meetings and were engaged in discussions through text submissions and expert testimony.

Information Disclosure The comprehensive information disclosure policy is still under development, but operates under the “presumption to disclose.” Form and function is to be decided, but the GCF information disclosure policy is intended to perform in a transparent manner. An independent fraud unit and a redress mechanism to address complaints related to Fund operations will also be established. The Secretariat’s communication strategy to set parameters for sharing information with the public will be formally considered in early 2016.
Issues raised
Additionally, some stakeholders have expressed concern about the GCF process, including the transparency and diversity and balance of the GCF’s accredited entities. Applicant identities are only revealed after Board approval, in part to avoid reputational impact if they are not accredited, and independent third-party views on the track record of applicant entities are not part of the Accreditation Panel review process. Developing country Board members have raised concerns about the preponderance of multilateral and bilateral development agencies and financing organizations among the first 20 Accrediting Entities. The transparency of GCF processes was also called into question after a controversial decision in 2013 banned live webcasting of its meetings.
Some have noted the need to agree a business model to capitalise the fund, agree access and allocation guidelines, and operationalise accountability functions.The importance of focusing on the private sector facility of the GCF, and finding effective ways to harness the expertise and capacities of the private sector in its operationalisation. The GCF’s Board most important task will be to regain momentum lost since December 2011.Our Climate Finance Fundamental on the GCF presents an overview of the governing instrument.

Relationship with Official Development Assistance

Inclusion as Official Development Assistance The GCF aims to channel new and additional financial resources through a replenishment process, but does not define these terms.
Financial instrument/ delivery mechanism used (e.g. grant, loan) Grants, concessional loans and other financial instruments yet to be determined.
Nature of recipient country involvement The GCF aims to provide simplified and improved access to climate finance including through direct access. It also aims to adopt a country-driven approach that encourages the involvement of relevant stakholders, including vulnerable groups and addressing gender aspects.
Overview over GCF Accredited Entities, as of 14 October 2016
APLNo Name of Entity Acronym Country Entity Type Size Fiduciary Standard E& S risk category Accreditation Date and Decision
MIE  

13

Africa Finance Corporation AFC Nigeria International Large basic, project management, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

27

African Development Bank AfDB Cote d’Ivoire International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

15

Agence France de Developpment AFD France International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A /Intermediation 1 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

5

Asian Development Bank ADB Philippines International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A /Intermediation 1 Decision B.09/07 March 26, 2015

16

Conservation International Foundation CI USA International Medium basig, project management, grant award Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

25

Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank Credit Agricole CIB France International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

14

Deutsche Bank Aktiongesellschaft Deutsche Bank AG Germany International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A /Intermediation 1 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

38

Deutsche Gesellschaf für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GIZ Germany International Medium basic, project management, grant award Category B/ Intermediation 2  

17

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development EBRD UK International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A /Intermediation 1 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

28

European Investment Bank EIB Luxembourg International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

40

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations FAO Italy International Medium basic, project management Category B/ Intermediation 2  

26

HSBC Holdings plc HSBC UK International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

18

Inter-American Development Bank IDB USA International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A /Intermediation 1 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

20

International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and International Development Association Word Bank USA International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A /Intermediation 1 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

29

International Finance Corporation IFC USA International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

41

International Fund for Agricultural Development IFAD USA International Medium Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category B/ Intermediation 2  

31

International Union for Conservation of Nature IUCN Switzerland International Medium Basic, project management, grant award Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

6

Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau KfW Germany International Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A /Intermediation 1 Decision B.09/07 March 26, 2015

42

Netherlandse Fiancierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden FMO Netherlands International large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1  

7

United Nations Development Programme UNDP USA International Medium Basic, project management Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.09/07 March 26, 2015

19

United Nations Envrionment Programme UNEP Kenya International Small Basic, project management Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.10/06,  July 9, 2015

32

World Food Programme WFP Italy International Micro Basic, project management Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

33

World Meterological Organizaton WNO Switzerland International Small Basic, project management Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016
RIE  

4

Acumen Funds, Inc. Acumen USA Regional Micro Basic, project management, on-lending/blending Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.09/07, March 26, 2015

35

Banque Ouest Africaine de Developppement BOAD Togo Regional medium basic, project managemetn, grant award, on-lending/blending Category B/ Intermediation 2  

12

Caribbean Community Climate Change Center CCCCC Belize Regional Small Basic, project management, grant award Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.10/6, July 9, 2015

36

Caribbean Development Bank CDB Barbados Regional small Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1  

11

Corporación Andina de Fomento CAF Venezuela Regional Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.10/6, July 9, 2015

24

Development Bank of Southern Africa DBSA South Africa Regional large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category A/ Intermediation 1 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

3

Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme SPREP Samoa Regional Small Basic, project management Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.09/07, March 26, 2015
NIE  

21

Agency for Agricultural Development of Morocco ADA Morocco National small Basic, project management Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

1

Centre de Suivi Ecologogique CSE Senegal National Micro Basic, project management Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.09/07, March 26, 2015

8

Environmental Investment Fund EIF Namibia National Micro Basic, project management, grant award Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.10/06, July 9, 2015

22

Ministry of Finance and Economic Cooperation of Ethiopia MOFEC Ethiopia National small basic, project management Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

9

Ministry of Natural Resources MINIRENA Rwanda National Small Basic, project management, grant award Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.10/06, July 9, 2015

10

National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development NABARD India National Large Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.10/06, July 9, 2015

23

National Environment Management Authority NEMA Kenya National micro Basic, project management Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

2

Peruvian Trust Fund for National Parks and Protected Areas Profonanpe Peru National Micro Basic, project management Category C/ Intermediation 3 Decision B.09/07, March 26, 2015

39

South African National Biodiversity Institute SANBI South Africa National small basic, project management, grant award Category B/ Intermediation 2  

30

Unidad Para el Cambio Rural UCAR Argentina National Small Basic, project management, grant award, on-lending/blending Category B/ Intermediation 2 Decision B.12/30, March 10, 2016

37

Xac Bank LLC Xac Bank Mongolia National small basic, project management, on-lending/blending Category B/ Intermediation 2