Climate Finance: Uzbekistan Prepares To Access Green Climate Fund

Uzbekistan

Water shortages and a temperature rise of 1.5 degrees Celsius over the past 50 years are just some of the effects of climate change that have already afflicted the landlocked Central Asian country Uzbekistan. Despite efforts made by the Government of Uzbekistan to reduce its citizens’ vulnerability to such changes by developing policies on water and land conservation, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and finding alternative sources of energy, much more needs to be done to avert a climate change-driven crisis.

To address this, with the support of UN Environment (UNEP), UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Resources Institute (WRI), the Green Climate Fund (GCF) Readiness Programme was launched in Tashkent in July 2016. In September, a seminar on National Implementing Entity (NIE) Accreditation was conducted for potential entity candidates, briefing participants on the GCF structure, its requirements, access modalities and the accreditation process. With support of the programme, a preliminary self-assessment of potential NIEs was later conducted and five of 11 interested organizations were found to meet the basic criteria for applying to become a NIE.

In November 2016, delegates from Uzbekistan’s National Designated Authority, the Centre of Hydrometeorological Service (Uzhydromet), travelled to the Green Climate Fund headquarters in Songdo, South Korea to meet with climate finance experts and learn how Uzbekistan can access additional climate funds. Such resources will both help expand existing climate change adaptation and mitigation projects and develop new ones in order to build the nation’s resilience to climate change.

Together, delegates and GCF experts discussed a range of different project ideas to be submitted for GCF funding, including developing Uzbekistan’s national adaptation plan (NAP), building energy-efficient rural housing, strengthening early warning and disaster risk reduction mechanisms, and improving solid waste management.

 

Uzbekistan presents to GCF Secretariat

Building on the positive outcomes of this trip, the Government of Uzbekistan, with the support of the GCF Readiness Programme, is poised to sign a partnership agreement with two national think tanks, the Institute of Forecasting and Macroeconomic Research (IFMR) and the Center for Economic Research, which will help the government develop a pipeline of projects for submission to GCF.

IFMR will help build the capacity of national partners by developing guidelines and providing training on GCF project proposal development, including providing technical assistance to national organizations in developing project proposals for GCF funding, while CER will help review existing national programs and strategies related to climate change mitigation and adaptation and evaluate new project proposals to ensure they meet both GCF requirements and national priorities.

Since the GCF Readiness Programme was launched in Uzbekistan, efforts have prioritised capacity building and awareness raising on climate finance options, including the GCF. Significant progress towards increasing the scale and scope of Uzbekistan’s climate change and adaptation programmes is expected in 2017, with the GCF Readiness Programme continuing its support to the Government of Uzbekistan to effectively and efficiently access, manage, deploy and monitor climate finance from GCF through building and strengthening institutional capacity to directly access to the Fund.