Day 8 at COP – #NaturePositive highlights

This news piece is an excerpt from the COP26 Daily Newsletter that Nature4Climate is publishing.

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Week 2 certainly has a different tenor than last week. With the leaders gone, ministers and other heads of delegations, and the ‘issue leads’ who support them, are now focussed on a “Glasgow Package,” with a number of negotiating items carrying over, including Article 6, transparency and finance. After the relatively predictable schedule of week 1, this week will be a rough one for negotiators – for example, the transparency item was scheduled for 10.5 hours of negotiation ending at midnight, and this was only Monday. We hope they all stay healthy!

At the same time, the announcements keep coming, with a number of adaptation- and resilience-focused ones seen yesterday. Seventy endorsements were made to the Principles for Locally Led Adaptation and more than $450 million mobilised for initiatives and programmes enhancing locally-led approaches. And $232 million was committed to the Adaptation Fund, the highest single mobilisation to the Fund and more than double the previous highest collective mobilisation. (See the Presidency’s full list of announcements here). We’ll be exploring the interlinkages with nature-based solutions for adaptation in the future.

More nature-related announcements below.

Day 8 round up

NbSI’s case study map
Yesterday, the Nature-based Solutions Initiative released its new interactive global map of best practice examples of nature-based solutions across the world, funded by the British Academy.  The interactive map links nature-based solutions to climate change adaptation and mitigation outcomes based on a systematic review of the peer-reviewed and grey literature. Case studies can be filtered by a range of parameters including ecosystem, intervention type, climate change impacts and instigators. The platform will continue to grow following today’s launch, with more case studies, with detailed coding and contextual information. NbSI also released three briefings, based on new studies, on the role of nature-based solutions in addressing climate vulnerability in Bangladesh and rural Global South in general, and on ensuring NbS support both biodiversity and climate change adaptation.

Great Green Wall ecosystems 
A new US$143 million investment programme will ensure millions of the most at-risk rural people living in the Sahel region of West Africa can adapt to climate change, with a wide-reaching plan to restore degraded land and provide climate information systems and agricultural insurance. The announcement was made yesterday during a signing ceremony of the grant agreement between the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Green Climate Fund (GCF). The Africa Integrated Climate Risk Management Programme will operate in seven countries: Burkina Faso, Chad, The Gambia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal. This is part of the African-led Great Green Wall (GGW) initiative which aims to restore degraded landscapes in the Sahel, one of the world’s poorest regions. Sweden also pledged SEK100 million (nearly US$11.7 million) to the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

Peoples Forests Partnership
The Peoples Forests Partnership was announced, aiming to fix a fundamental flaw in carbon financing by directing significant private funding to forest communities to reward their efforts to successfully stop deforestation. The Partnership will include Indigenous organizations, conservation groups, companies, and investors and seeks to mobilize and direct billions of dollars in private and public-sector investments to community-based forest conservation projects. While closing a major equity gap in climate finance, the partnership will support meaningful contributions toward Paris Agreement targets, voluntary corporate climate commitments, and Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). The Peoples Forests Partnership aims to mobilize at least $20 billion per year in long-term, private-sector investments as well as public funding, and channel it directly to forest community projects by 2030.

Blue bonds 
Last week, on Ocean Day at COP26, the UK Government pledged £400,000 to support the Fijian Government in issuing its first sovereign blue bond. This is a UN-led programme that will help to create a supportive environment for sustainable ocean finance in Fiji, enabling projects that improve ocean health and support the livelihoods of coastal communities. Also on Friday, in a switch to bolster marine conservation, Belize announced it had settled its cash tender offer to purchase U.S. dollar bonds due in 2034 and redeem all bonds that were not tendered into the offer. According to Reuters, “Belize financed the purchase and the redemption of its bonds – an amount equal to about 12% of its gross domestic product – with funding from a subsidiary of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) as part of the organization’s “blue” bonds program to conserve some of the world’s most vulnerable marine ecosystems. The settlement of the offer means Belize reduced the principal amount of its external debt by approximately $250 million.  As part of the transaction, Belize’s government prefunded nearly $23.5 million to a marine conservation endowment account dedicated to supporting future marine conservation projects in the country.”

VCM projections 
A new report by Trove Research concludes there will be a growing demand for carbon credits from companies looking to offset emissions and that prices should and will rise, but not to the levels suggested by the TSVCM.  Their research forecasts a voluntary market size of $10 – 40bn in 2030 – someway short of the TSVCM’s higher estimates of $100 – 180bn.

Nigeria launches REDD+ Strategy
In the Nigeria Pavilion, Hassan Musa, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Federal Minister of Environment, Sharon Olive Ikeazor, and Dr Moses Ama, the National REDD+ Coordinator took the opportunity at COP26 to launch their National REDD+ Strategy and discuss its contribution to Nigeria’s updated NDC. Nigeria is now in the process of identifying appropriate and sufficient funding partners and mechanisms to implement the national strategy. Given the commitments made here at COP26 – from the Glasgow Leaders Declaration on Forests and Land Use to those made during Nature Day on November 6th – one would expect that the support Nigeria is seeking is just around the corner.

This news piece is an excerpt from the COP26 Daily Newsletter that Nature4Climate is publishing.

Sign up here to get the full newsletter direct to your inbox.

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