Highlights and images for 24 May 2017

United States of America


The second day of the 52nd meeting of the GEF Council, Wednesday, 24 May, began with a briefing by Rosina Bierbaum, Chair, Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP). Bierbaum highlighted good practices in integrated approach pilots (IAPs) and improvements in project identification forms in multi-focal areas. She identified opportunities for the GEF to promote innovation, including through financial products, technology, business models, market transformation and policies. Among emerging challenges, Bierbaum stressed: sustainable consumption and production for food systems and plastics; environmental security; and “novel entities,” such as nanomaterials, synthetic biology and new chemicals. In the ensuing discussion, Council members, inter alia, highlighted overlaps between STAP and the Independent Evaluation Office (IEO), and asked STAP for inclusion of sand and dust storms as an emerging issue.

During the morning session, the Council also considered the Semi-Annual Evaluation Report May 2017, which summarizes key conclusions from nine evaluations, including on programmatic approaches, focal areas, gender mainstreaming and transformational change, completed between October 2016 and May 2017.

In the afternoon, the Council discussed Relations with the Conventions and other International Institutions, with presentations by the Executive Secretaries from the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), as well as the Principal Coordinator of the Interim Secretariat of the Minamata Convention on Mercury. Many Council members underscored synergies and complementarity among the GEF Conventions.

The Council concluded the day with a discussion on tackling global environmental challenges through IAPs.

IISD Reporting Services, through its ENB+ Meeting Coverage, has provided daily web coverage from the GEF Council Consultation Meeting with CSOs. In addition, IISD Reporting Services, has produced a summary report from the 52nd GEF Council Meeting and 22nd Meeting of the LDCF/SCCF Council, which is abailable in HTML and PDF.

Photos by IISD/ENB | Leila Mead
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A view of the room during the presentation of the report of the STAP Chair

STAP Chair Rosina Bierbaum and Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson

STAP Chair Rosina Bierbaum

STAP members during the presentation of the report of the STAP Chair

Ralph Sims, STAP member (left)

Rosina Bierbaum, STAP Chair, noting its adaptation to the environment and innovative targeted approach, proposes pistol shrimp (Alpheidae) as a mascot for the GEF.

Council member Merete Villum Pedersen, Denmark

Council member Majid Bizmark, Iran

Francoise Clottes, GEF Secretariat, Geeta Batra, IEO, and Juha Ilari Uitto, Director, IEO, during the presentation of the Semi-Annual Evaluation Report and management response

Kees Rade, Council member, the Netherlands

Francoise Clottes, GEF Secretariat

Council member Judith Gelbman, Canada

Council member Zhongjing Wang, China

GEF CEO and Chairperson Naoko Ishii

Philipp Knill, Council Co-Chair, and Council member Peter Elder, Australia

Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson

Cristiana Pașca Palmer, Executive Secretary, CBD, addresses the Council during a session on Relations with the Conventions and other International Institutions

Cristiana Paşca Palmer, Executive Secretary, CBD

Jacob Duer, Principal Coordinator, Interim Secretariat of the Minamata Convention

Monique Barbut, Executive Secretary, UNCCD

Rolph Payet, Executive Secretary, Stockholm Convention on POPs

Council Member May Gicquel, France

Council member Jozef Buys, Belgium

Council Member Stefan Marco Schwager, Switzerland

A view of the room during the session on Tackling Global Environmental Challenges through the IAP Programs and the presentation of Ede Jorge Ijjasz-Vasquez, World Bank, who discussed the Global Platform for Sustainable Cities

Ede Jorge Ijjasz-Vasquez, World Bank

Xueman Wang, World Bank

Andrew Bovarnick, UN Development Programme

Margarita Astralaga, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)

A view of the dais during the presentation of Margarita Astralaga, IFAD

Gustavo Fonseca, GEF Secretariat, and Gilbert Bankobeza, Ozone Secretariat

Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson, and Gilbert Bankobeza, Ozone Secretariat

Delegates from the US and UK consulting

Melchiade Bukuru, UNCCD (center)

Council member Marita Olson, Sweden (center)

Delegates taking a selfie