A view of the plenary session from the dais
On Wednesday morning the GEF Secretariat presented the Work Program, amounting to USD 588.5 million, including two Impact Programs on sustainable cities and on food systems, land use and restoration, as well as the first three Non-Grant Instruments and the first dedicated GEF-funded initiative that will focus entirely on indigenous peoples. The Secretariat noted that the Work Program will almost fully achieve GEF-7 targets regarding marine protected areas and land restoration and will contribute substantially to meeting targets regarding emissions of greenhouse gases and persistent organic pollutants.
After seeking a number of clarifications and offering comments about specific elements and projects, Council Members approved the Work Program, which will benefit 87 recipient countries, including 25 Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and 24 small island developing States (SIDS). Council Members considered a report by the GEF Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) on its December 2019 Semi-Annual Evaluation of the GEF, and on a methodological approach for post-completion verification. They acknowledged the IEO’s progress cited in the report and, following an exchange of views and suggestions for improvement, endorsed the draft post-completion verification methodology.
The GEF Secretariat presented, and Council Members generally welcomed, a proposed Private Sector Engagement Strategy. Many Council Members felt it would benefit from a redrafting, to provide further clarification and greater detail, and several Members requested more time for consultations about the proposed Strategy to bring their constituencies on board. Some Members called for a detailed implementation plan to be proposed to the Council. A decision was adopted, calling for the Secretariat to present a revised strategy at the June 2020 Council meeting, taking into account Council Members’ comments and broader consultations, and to present an implementation plan no later than the December 2020 Council meeting.
Council Members also considered the Strategic Country Cluster Evaluation of the SIDS, and heard updates by the Executive Secretary of the Minamata Convention on Mercury, the acting Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the Chair of the Open-Ended Working Group on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, and the Ozone Secretariat.
Revised draft decisions on minimum fiduciary standards and the GEF Monitoring Report 2019 were adopted after brief discussion.
Participants listen to Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson, elaborating on the GEF’s role in navigating transformational change.
L-R: William Ehlers, GEF Secretariat; Gillian Guthrie, Co-Chair of the 57th GEF Council meeting; Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson; Gustavo Fonseca, GEF Secretariat; and Claude Gascon, GEF Secretariat
Gustavo Fonseca, GEF Secretariat, presents the proposed Work Program.
Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson
Ben Green, Council Member, UK
Anar Mamdani, Council Member, Canada
Rob Wing, Alternate Council Member, US
Yoshiko Motoyama, Alternate Council Member, Japan
Juha Uitto, Director, IEO, presents the IEO's Semi-Annual Evaluation Report.
Dan Bakoye Chaibou, Council Member, Niger
Aparna Subramani, Council Member, India
L-R: Narges Saffar, Council Member, Iran, confers with Rachna Ramsurn, Council Member, Mauritius.
Stephanie Bouziges-Eschmann, Alternate Council Member, France
Manrique Altavista, Alternate Council Member, Argentina
Ornela Cuci, Council Member, Albania
Victoria Schreitter, Council Member, Austria
Participants from the GEF-CSO Network listen to an intervention by Rodgers Lubilo, GEF-CSO Network.
L-R: Gustavo Fonseca, GEF Secretariat; Gillian Guthrie, Co-Chair of the 57th GEF Council meeting; Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO and Chairperson; Helen Crowley, GEF Private Sector Advisory Group; and Matthew Reddy, GEF Secretariat
Matthew Reddy, GEF Secretariat
Helen Crowley, Conservation International, speaking on behalf of the GEF Private Sector Advisory Group
Peter Elder, Council Member, Australia
Kordula Mehlhart, Council Member, Germany
Thea Edwards, Alternate Council Member, UK
Ruzanna Grigoryan, Alternate Council Member, Armenia
L-R: Geeta Batra, IEO, and Juha Uitto, Director, IEO
Gillian Guthrie, Co-Chair of the 57th GEF Council meeting
Feturi Elisaia, Samoa
Yoshimoto Kondo, Council Member, Japan
Elizabeth Lien, US
Renato Leonardi, Alternate Council Member, Brazil
Rossana Silva Repetto, Executive Secretary, Minamata Convention on Mercury
Elizabeth Mrema, Acting Executive Secretary, CBD
Basile van Havre, Co-Chair, Open-ended Working Group on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework
Gilbert Bankobeza, Ozone Secretariat
Anna Mallard, Australia
Lauren Céline Naville Gisnås, Council Member, Norway
L-R: Chizuru Aoki and Gustavo Fonseca, GEF Secretariat
A participant browses ENB+ coverage of the 57th meeting of the GEF Council.
All ENB photos are free to use with attribution. For the 57th Meeting of the GEF Council, please use: Photo by IISD/ENB | Francis Dejon.
To receive free coverage of global environmental events delivered to your inbox, subscribe to the ENB Update newsletter.