The world’s biggest global climate fund has approved a $189 million commitment to &Green facility to support agriculture that doesn’t cause deforestation.
The pledge by the $12.8 billion Incheon, South Korea-based Green Climate Fund will target the sustainable production of crops such as cocoa, palm oil, soybeans and rubber in 11 nations without reducing tree cover. Six of the recipients are in Africa — Ivory Coast, Zambia, Liberia, Gabon, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Cameroon — the GCF said in a statement sent to Bloomberg on Monday.
“This enables investment in deforestation-free commodities for agricultural food supply,” Kavita Sinha, director of the GCF’s private sector facility, said in an interview at the Africa Climate Summit in Nairobi. Africa is “the big opportunity to do it right from the start. It’s not like Indonesia or Brazil, where we’ve seen a lot of unsustainable practices that they’re now trying to correct.”
Preserving Africa’s tropical rain forests, which include the vast Congo Basin, savanna forest cover and about a fifth of the world’s mangroves on the continent, is increasingly being seen as a bulwark against climate change. Trees absorb and store carbon, lessening the impact of greenhouse gas emissions.
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The money provided by the Green Climate Fund comprises grants, loans, private sector co-financing, and will be deployed to a bigger facility that has $981.6 million in financing. The &Green fund will ensure agricultural companies that benefit from it contractually commit to sustainable farming practices and protecting and restoring forests, Sinha said.
The Netherlands-based &Green fund was set up by the nation’s state development bank FMO. Its other investors include the Global Environment Facility, Norway’s International Climate and Forest Initiative and the UK’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
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