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Nigeria, 138 others get funds to reverse species loss ahead of biodiversity deal

By Chinedum Uwaegbulam
23 May 2022   |   4:03 am
With global biodiversity loss at dangerous levels, Nigeria and 138 countries have received a lifeline to fast-track efforts to conserve, protect and restore species and ecosystems as soon as a new global accord, currently under negotiation, is approved.

UNDP

•Countries eligible for $300,000 new GEF grants
•Post-2020 global biodiversity framework for adoption in 2022

With global biodiversity loss at dangerous levels, Nigeria and 138 countries have received a lifeline to fast-track efforts to conserve, protect and restore species and ecosystems as soon as a new global accord, currently under negotiation, is approved.

   
The new financing from the Global Environment Facility (GEF), totalling $43 million, would give developing countries the means to quickly put the anticipated Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework into practice and make headway towards the goal of halting and reversing species loss this decade.
  
The GEF Early Action Grants are to provide immediate financial and technical support for governments of developing nations to draw from resources in the biodiversity focal area in the GEF’s seventh funding cycle, known as GEF-7. 
   
The support is to accelerate implementation of the framework once formally agreed at the 2022 UN Biodiversity Conference (COP 15).  Biodiversity protection also represents the biggest share of the GEF-8 programming period, which will run from July 2022 to June 2026.
   
Supported with technical expertise from the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and UN Environment Programme (UNEP), the participating countries are to analyse and align their national policies, targets, finance and monitoring systems to take effective action on global threats to biodiversity.
  
Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity, Elizabeth Mrema, said:  “As we celebrate the International Day for Biological Diversity, this commitment shows that the world is united in recognising the urgent need to end the destruction of nature and the loss of the services it provides. This early action will prepare parties to mobilise for the action that all sectors of society will take to make these aspirations a reality in the 10 years ahead.”
   
The post-2020 agenda, a 10-year plan to halt the increase in the rate of extinctions and bring 30 per cent of land and sea areas under protection, is to be agreed by the 196 parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity when they meet in Kunming later this year.
  
GEF Chief Executive Officer and Chairperson, Carlos Manuel Rodriguez, pointed out that it was important for all countries to act quickly once the new framework is approved.

“Setting our aspirations is only a first step, and this coming decade requires us to sprint,” he said.
 “The Global Biodiversity Framework represents a critical opportunity to set our planet on a new course,” UNEP Executive Director, Inger Andersen, said.

 
UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner, noted: “We need to create a planetary safety net by putting nature at the heart of our global, national and local economies and development frameworks.”

The grant recipient are Albania, Algeria, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Cameroun, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Congo DR, Costa Rica, Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador and Equatorial Guinea.

Others include Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger and Nigeria.