On August 14, 2020, Reuters reported on Nairobi’s increased efforts to expand green infrastructure. The article highlights how such investments address challenges posed by the pandemic and the climate crisis. The Kenyan capital is improving the protection and quality of green spaces, especially along the Nairobi River, while supporting people in need. In March, the city hired jobless former residents of the Michuki Memorial Park to help clean, restore, and guard the area. The park now provides locals with recreational space, while also improving the microclimate and habitat quality for species formerly displaced due to high pollution levels. The city is also pushing toward better road corridors with improved sidewalks and drainage as well as more trees to foster active mobility and avoid flooding events.
A series of four What-If simulations have been conducted in a vulnerable agricultural community in Ghana on sustainable recovery investments that can foster sustainable community development. These simulations were done in collaboration with the Green Climate Fund.
This What-If simulation estimates the impact of investing in climate-smart crop management interventions in a rural community in Ghana. Costs and benefits, including externalities, are estimated for two financing scenarios: one that includes the provision of sustainable recovery support by the Green Climate Fund and one that does not.
This What-If simulation estimates the impact of investing in solar photovoltaic energy generation in a rural community in Ghana. Costs and benefits, including the value of avoided carbon emissions, are estimated for two financing scenarios: one that includes the provision of sustainable recovery support by the Green Climate Fund and one that does not.
This What-If simulation estimates the costs and societal benefits from investing in drip irrigation infrastructure for a rural community in Ghana. The simulation results serve to inform the Green Climate Fund and other public donors and investors whether such irrigation infrastructure should be targeted by sustainable recovery financing.
This What-If simulation estimates the costs and societal benefits from investing in biogas energy generation and compost production based on pig manure reuse in a rural community in Ghana. The simulation results serve to inform the Green Climate Fund and other public donors and investors whether such investments should be targeted by sustainable recovery financing.
The coronavirus crisis is a crisis like no other, and for emerging market and developing economies (EMDE), it has triggered a policy response like no other, both in scope and magnitude. Despite their diversity, and in some cases, strained resources, this large group of countries—consisting of emerging markets and low-income countries—have bolstered the provision of...Read more »
As EU leaders continue to thrash out the details of the bloc’s recovery measures, there is growing evidence a green recovery is the best way of tackling the mounting economic and jobs crisis—both in the short and long terms. COVID-19 is going to result in a substantial economic cost, both in gross domestic product (GDP)...Read more »
In Argentina, green debt relief has supported forest conservation, an approach that can and should be scaled up as coronavirus stretches budgets. At last month’s meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), three topics dominated the conversation: the coronavirus pandemic, greening the recovery, and climate change. For many developing countries, especially the poorest, the overwhelming...Read more »
Investments into Canada’s social, human, and natural capital are needed to ensure growth is sustained, equitable and opportunity-generating. Canada’s economy has been repeatedly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fall-out. The combination of economic shutdowns, social distancing requirements, low oil prices and historic declines in export volumes have extended the downturn. As both...Read more »
Cities are on the frontlines of COVID-19, with urban residents facing devastating health and economic impacts. Many city leaders are responding with creative solutions, recognizing that actions in response to the pandemic can also make cities greener and more climate resilient. Addis Ababa, Bogota, Kampala, Berlin and Brussels created new bike lanes to reduce risk...Read more »
Canadians want a green and inclusive recovery. Here’s how to advance both. The damage that COVID-19’s dual economic and health crises have brought on Canada have been well-documented. Although the economy has started to recover, Canadians continue to face a lengthy period of economic turbulence ahead. The federal government has indicated that spending on an...Read more »
To ensure this spending does in fact “build back better,” governments must tie their spending to sustainability targets or conditions.
This SAVi what-if simulation forecasts the economic and environmental benefits of investing in energy efficiency and flood resilience within Canada's building sector. The forecasts point to substantial net benefits, demonstrating this to be a sustainable recovery strategy.
The global health crisis has left us no choice but to demand a transformative future where more adaptable, flexible, multi-purpose and inclusive infrastructure can help society stay resilient in the face of looming threats. As we emerge from this coronavirus pandemic, what future should we anticipate? Listening to some politicians and pundits, we are led...Read more »
A conversation with Leonardo Garrido, Lead Economist, New Climate Economy, and Andrea Bassi, CEO, KnowlEdge, and Senior Associate, IISD. 15 July 2020, at 4:00 PM Central European Summer Time Watch the webinar’s full recording: Planning a low-carbon recovery requires that we look ahead to determine how public spending today can trigger economic growth tomorrow. But growth...Read more »
A conversation with Prof. Gail Whiteman, Founder, Arctic Basecamp Monday, July 6, 2020, 6:00 PM Central European Summer Time (CEST). Are we indeed seeing a low-carbon recovery? What are the early signs and who are the front runners? And should we be doing more to reward them? Post-pandemic greenhouse gas emissions are rising, and, as we...Read more »
A conversation with Joseph Intsiful, a Senior Specialist at the Green Climate Fund who focuses on climate information and early warning systems, and Andrea Bassi, Senior Associate, IISD and CEO KnowlEdge. Webinar 2: July 10, 2020, at 10:00 AM Central European Summer Time (CEST) Watch the webinar’s full recording below: Joseph and Andrea explored why...Read more »
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Union (EU), and the Green Climate Fund (GCF) launched two programs to boost green finance and improve value chains, aiming to foster a green recovery of the Egyptian economy. Working with the EBRD’s local partner banks, the programs cumulatively worth EUR 220 million will offer...Read more »
On October 30, 2020, the South Africa National Department for Cooperative Governance, World Resources Institute (WRI) Ross Center for Sustainable Cities, and the Coalition for Urban Transitions announced a new partnership. It will support a green, resilient, and equitable COVID-19 recovery for cities in South Africa while focusing on implementing the country’s Integrated Urban Development...Read more »
On October 30, 2020, The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced that it would collaborate with the Kenyan government to offer aid to over 24,000 families affected by the pandemic in Mombasa and Nairobi counties. This aid program receives contributions from US AID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance. Before the lockdowns caused by COVID-19, Mombasa...Read more »
On September 28, the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance (the Lab) launched eight innovative finance solutions designed to channel private resources to climate action in developing economies. The instruments pay attention to supporting the most vulnerable populations during and after the pandemic while building long-term resilience. The finance instruments will support nature-based solutions as well...Read more »
The UN Economic Commission for Africa and the Government of Ethiopia signed a Memorandum of Understanding on August 13, 2020, kicking off a USD 3.6 million project on nature-based solutions for water resources infrastructure and community resilience in Ethiopia. The project is part of the Ethiopian Government’s Green Legacy initiative and serves as the official...Read more »
On August 6, 2020, the World Bank approved USD 250 million in International Development Association (IDA) credit and grants for Niger. The funds are supposed to help the West African country to develop its human capital and to address challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The new funding is part of a program series targeted...Read more »
The Senegalese government issued a decree at the beginning of August that exempts 22 different renewable energy equipment types from the value-added tax (VAT). Renewable energy production technologies targeted by this exemption are wind farms, biogas production facilities, solar photovoltaic, and a range of other solar-powered technologies, such as solar water heaters, solar lamp kits,...Read more »
On August 5, 2020, the European Investment Bank (EIB) announced it was directing EUR 300 million toward the COVID-19 response and recovery in African nations. The funding is part of the EIB Team Europe Initiative, designed to help the most vulnerable and exposed countries respond to the immediate health crisis, mitigate social and economic impacts,...Read more »
The Green for Growth Fund, an impact investment fund targeted at mitigating climate change and promoting sustainable economic growth in various countries, has announced on 05. August to provide a top-up loan to Banque du Caire in Egypt. The additional USD 15 million will support financing energy efficiency and resource efficiency measures of small and...Read more »
In this article, Mukhisa Kituyi, Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), and Dona Bertarelli, UNCTAD’s new Special Adviser for the Blue Economy, call for a sustainable blue economic recovery and describe what that could look like. The health of the oceans is in steep decline. A natural resource so crucial...Read more »
The UN Environment Programme (UNEP), alongside several partners in the Sustainable Infrastructure Partnership (SIP), developed a set of ten principles for post-COVID-19 recovery focusing on investing in sustainable and resilient infrastructure. The ‘Principles for Recovery’ provide a framework for decision making on infrastructure spending for post-COVID-19 recovery and stimulus packages. The Principles call for decisions...Read more »
On July 15, the World Economic Forum released a new report on the need to address the future of nature, in addition to climate change, in a post-COVID-19 recovery. The report highlights that a business-as-usual approach has no future. In addition to fighting climate change, three systems need to undergo a fundamental transformation to address...Read more »
On July 2020, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) reported that Ghana is undertaking a National Adaptation Planning (NAP) process, in which it seeks to improve its resilience to climate change and its impacts over the next 60 years. Its NAP process has been supported by the NAP Global Network since 2018. By developing anticipated climate...Read more »
On June 30th 2020, the European Union (EU) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) announced a total grant package of EUR 61.3 million to be provided for green and climate resilient investments in Egypt, Morocco and the countries of the Eastern Partnership. By allocating grants to energy efficiency, renewable energy and climate...Read more »
Environmental Finance reports on 08 June 2020 that Ninety One, an asset manager, recently launched a COVID-19 recovery impact fund in South Africa. This is another example where private sources of financing are used for recovery measures. The fund will have a portfolio of senior debt, subordinated debt, preferred equity, listed equity and private equity....Read more »
Several of the 126 countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) are calling for debt relief, including for infrastructure projects that have been hit by negative economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. A range of BRI projects, such as coal-fired power plants, hydropower plants, and oil palm plantations, has been criticized for their...Read more »
On June 8, 2020, the World Trade Organization Secretariat published a report on trade-related developments in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic in least-developed countries (LDCs). The economies of LDCs have been hit extra hard during this pandemic, as many rely on export-sensitive sectors that came to a near standstill (tourism, textiles, etc.), as well as...Read more »
The Italian government unveiled the outline of the national COVID-19 recovery plan, which will allocate a total of EUR 196 billion to six key areas. The plan includes the following investments: EUR 74.3 billion is earmarked for a green revolution and ecologic transition.EUR 48.7 billion will go toward digitalization and innovation.EUR 27.7 billion will be...Read more »
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres highlighted the urgency of a green recovery in a speech on December 2, 2020. In his address at Columbia University in New York, he painted a bleak picture of the state of the planet, pointing to the concerning results of the provisional State of the Global Climate report by the...Read more »
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, launched the first part of London’s Green New Deal fund. The investments of GBP 10 million aim to boost green jobs, tackle climate change, and address inequalities. This first phase of the package is expected to secure around 1,000 green jobs—for instance, related to solar panel installation and energy...Read more »
On November 17, 2020, the United Kingdom government unveiled its 10-point green recovery plan. The GBP 12 billion stimulus package will benefit the green economy across the country, for instance going toward carbon capture, hydrogen, nuclear, electric vehicles, and renewable energy. Prime Minister Boris Johnson estimates that the green recovery plan will create 250,000 new...Read more »
The Green Climate Fund (GCF) approved a USD 23.1 million grant towards strengthening the climate resilience of Mongolian herder communities. The project aims to enhance climate-informed natural resources management and sustainable livestock practices, building on traditional cooperative approaches among herders. It will also introduce innovative technologies for the traceability of sustainably sourced livestock products and...Read more »
On November 10, 2020, members of the High Ambition Coalition underlined commitments for a green recovery, aiming for 60% of recovery spending to be climate-friendly; a phase-out of fossil fuel subsidies; and debt relief to give developing states the capacity for a green recovery. The coalition calls for an ambitious recovery from COVID-19 that sets...Read more »
On November 5, 2020, an England-wide nature restoration initiative was launched. It aims to tackle biodiversity loss and climate change, and to help people reconnect with the natural world. Led by Natural England, the Nature Recovery Network (NRN) Delivery Partnership brings together representatives from over 600 organizations, such as RSPB, Wildlife and Countryside Link, and...Read more »
New research commissioned by the C40 Global Mayors COVID-19 Recovery Task Force illustrates the benefits of green and just recovery for employment, emissions, and health across the world’s 100 leading cities. The new technical report, published in October 2020, compares how urban greenhouse gas emissions, health, and jobs could develop under a green recovery compared...Read more »
As of October 26, 2020, the European Union (EU) has allotted PHP 3.76 billion in grant funding to the Philippines under the Access to Sustainable Energy Programme. This grant will support sustainable recovery efforts in the Philippines, particularly within the energy sector. During a webinar held on October 22, 2020, the head of the EU...Read more »
In early October, the Spanish President Pedro Sánchez presented plans to invest EUR 72 billion in European funds over the next three years, aiming to create 800,000 jobs. The Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan addresses four key areas for a COVID-19 recovery: ecological transition, digitalization, gender equality, and social cohesion. The Spanish government expects the...Read more »
The Reuters Foundation reported on October 21, 2020, that New Zealand’s recently re-elected Prime Minister, Jacinda Arden, is being urged to pursue green economic recovery plans. Arden’s successful response to the COVID-19 pandemic is being seen as an indication of good crisis management skills. As her demonstrated commitment to facing environmental concerns was the main...Read more »
On October 19, the We Mean Business Coalition published a report illustrating that green recovery plans boost income, employment and GDP better than traditional stimulus measures. It therefore recommends governments to reject return-to-normal stimulus packages, e.g. with a focus on VAT reductions and increasing household spending, in favour of targeted support for green technologies and...Read more »
The German Environment Agency (Umweltbundesamt) published a paper analyzing 130 studies on green recovery programs. It finds a broad consensus on the need to use COVID-19 recovery packages to address the climate and biodiversity crises. The authors of the paper also discover a consensus on the huge benefits of green recovery programs, the eligibility criteria...Read more »
In September 2020, the World Bank published a new paper about private finance for nature. The detailed piece, which is available on the Green Finance Platform, argues that private finance can and must be harnessed to better protect and manage biodiversity and ecosystem services around the world. The authors underline that governments and regulators, supported...Read more »
Researchers from the Global Development Policy Center at Boston University have developed a way to measure the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The IMF COVID-19 Recovery Index aims to quantify the extent to which the organization recommends (or conditions) borrowing countries to increase their efforts to combat the pandemic, protect vulnerable...Read more »
On October 1, 2020, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a plan to position the Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) as an important vehicle for a sustainable recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The bank will allocate CAD 10 billion within three years to projects that create 60,000 jobs and contribute to a green, low-carbon economy. Priority...Read more »
A new McKinsey report highlights the business case for stepping up global investments in natural capital. The authors illustrate the critical need for expanding nature conservation, analyzing global risks to natural capital, and the crucial value of nature for human activities. To reduce the loss of natural capital around the world, scientists and policy-makers demand...Read more »
Political leaders from around the world have launched the Leaders’ Pledge for Nature, committing to reversing biodiversity loss by 2030. Supported by more than 70 countries and several non-state actors, the pledge is meant to send a united signal to step up global ambition for biodiversity, nature, climate, and people. The Leaders’ Pledge for Nature...Read more »
In an article published in September 2020, authors from the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) make the case for scaling up green recovery efforts worldwide. The article underlines that well-designed economic stimulus packages can create much-needed jobs and lower emissions while also transforming the countries for leadership in the green economy over the longer term. The...Read more »
In September 2020, The Guardian reported that a majority of people across Britain supports an ambitious transformation of the United Kingdom into a greener, fairer, and more equal society. The assessment is based on an extensive inquiries by a cross-party group of MPs, which involved over 55,000 people through representative polls, workshops, and telephone conversations....Read more »
The Task Force for a Resilient Recovery has released its final report, recommending CAD 55.4 billion in green recovery investments to support long-term jobs and economic growth in Canada. The Task Force encourages Canada’s leaders to learn from the missed opportunities after the 2008/09 financial crisis when countries invested in recovery measures that resulted in a historic...Read more »
The British government has launched its GBP 40 million Green Recovery Challenge Fund, supporting up to 5,000 jobs in areas such as tree planting and nature conservation. Environmental groups can now apply for grants worth GBP 50,000 to GBP 5 million. The fund is aimed at labour-intensive projects that deliver nature-based solutions to climate change...Read more »
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) published a new policy brief about opportunities for a green, inclusive COVID-19 recovery. The document, called Making the Green Recovery Work for Jobs, Income and Growth, includes a review of announced recovery and stimulus policies in OECD and Key Partner countries. On the one hand, OECD governments...Read more »
The Smart Prosperity Institute has published an article outlining opportunities for a green and inclusive COVID-19 recovery in Canada. The authors underline that some groups within society, especially women, younger workers, persons of colour, and persons with disabilities, have been hit disproportionately hard by the recession. The article, therefore, calls on the government to carefully...Read more »
The International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) published a paper about the use of debt swaps to address the debt, climate, and biodiversity crises. Published in September 2020, the paper illustrates how governments could address this triple crisis in their COVID-19 recovery packages using debt for climate and nature program swaps. According to the...Read more »
In August 2020, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) published a brochure informing countries about sustainable recovery opportunities. Apart from presenting the central reasons for a green recovery, the document, called A Pathway to a Low-Carbon and Resilient Future, also entails three items that could help decision-makers design such programs: It lists possible low-carbon and resilience-enhancing...Read more »
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has restructured its financing plan for Bangladesh to help the country recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Country Operations Business Plan (COBP) for 2021 to 2023, which was published in August, includes USD 5.28 billion in loans. A major part of the funds (USD 2.39 billion) will be disbursed in...Read more »
On August 27, 2020, partners of the U.K. Ignition project launched the report Nature-Based Solutions to the Climate Emergency: The Benefits to Business and Society. The project’s aim is to develop innovative financing solutions for investments in Greater Manchester’s natural environment, helping the city to adapt to the impacts of climate change. The report presents...Read more »
Colombia’s president Ivan Duque sees his country on track to economic recovery. Participating in a virtual conference on August 20, 2020, he discussed the key role of the government’s stimulus and recovery plan, called Compromiso por el Futuro de Colombia. It includes investments over COP 100 billion (about EUR 22 million) and the creation of 1...Read more »
On August 26, 2020, The Guardian reported the creation of a new joint venture that seeks to invest billions in natural capital around the world. HSBC Global Asset Management and Pollination, a climate advisory and investment firm, are forming the world’s largest investment firm dedicated to environmentally friendly projects beyond renewable energy. The plan is...Read more »
Bloomberg Green reported on August 24, 2020, that Bangladesh is expecting the World Bank to approve USD 2 billion in loans to support its ambitious climate adaptation plan, with the first installment planned for the beginning of next year. The funds would be used to implement the Delta Plan 100, which aims to minimize damages...Read more »
On August 25, 2020, U.S. Senate Democrats published a comprehensive plan calling for the government to step up climate action and stimulate the creation of green jobs. The new report demands public spending of more than USD 400 billion a year to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The spending would equal about 2% of the...Read more »
On August 13, 2020, Climate Home News reported on an international study about green recovery opportunities in Brazil. The study by the New Climate Economy and World Resources Institute, in partnership with former finance ministers and World Bank executives, finds that the government could rebuild the economy faster after the pandemic by making low-carbon growth...Read more »
On August 3, 2020, the European Investment Bank (EIB) announced the financing of nearly 40 projects in Barcelona that serve multiple objectives for the city. On the one hand, the projects contribute to the climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts of the city; on the other hand, they create jobs and enhance social inclusion. Therefore,...Read more »
On July 29, 2020, the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) published the results of a study that highlights the enormous job creation potential associated with a transition to a net-zero carbon economy in Latin America and the Caribbean. Even though such a transition would terminate around 7.5 million jobs in...Read more »
London Mayor Sadiq Khan and the London Recovery Board announced a GBP 1.5 billion Infrastructure Investment Package on July 29, 2020, that aims to recover the local economy, creating jobs and reducing London’s carbon and water footprints. The specific projects and corresponding budget allocations are yet to be defined. Projects will be implemented together with...Read more »
On July 17, 2020, West Berkshire Council issued the U.K.’s first local government green bond using the crowd investment platform Abundance. This innovative financing solution is called Community Municipal Investment and targets local citizens to become investors for green projects in their own municipalities. Within a week, GBP 300,000 of the GBP 1 million target...Read more »
The Government of New Zealand earmarked a NZ$ 3 billion portion from the country´s COVID Response and Recovery Fund to invest in infrastructure plans. The Cabinet announced on June 30th 2020, how the Infrastructure Fund will be allocated across regions and sectors with the target to create more than 20,000 jobs and unlock additional investments....Read more »
The risks of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases are increasing because of a loss of ecosystems and deforestation. This is why including nature-based solutions and green infrastructure in a sustainable recovery is essential, as reported by Business India on June 4, 2020.
On June 2, 2020, Pakistan Today reported on the World Bank’s USD 188 million in funding for the Government of Pakistan for disaster risk reduction and the restoration of the natural environment. This will strengthen Pakistan’s green economic stimulus recovery package.
On June 4, 2020, on the evening before World Environment Day, the International Union for Conversation of Nature (IUCN) explained in this blog why protecting our natural environment is a safer and cheaper option than waiting for the next crisis to hit.
The Inter-American Development Bank supports Guatemala under its REDD+ framework to scale its good practices on sustainable forest management and agriculture. The management of the cardamom value chain in Guatemala is an example of how to make agriculture more resilient in a post-COVID-19 recovery. It is also exemplary in its positive social impact, especially by...Read more »
The World Resources Institute reports that the rate of return of climate adaptation investments ranges from 2:1 to 10:1. The investments considered in the simulation include strengthening early warning systems, making new infrastructure climate resilient, improving dryland agriculture for crop production, protecting mangroves, and making water resources more resilient. These five investment areas alone can...Read more »