El Salvador: Keeping its Paris Agreement commitments by improving climate financing

El Salvador

Climate change-related natural disasters such as landslides, heavy rain and droughts are already a reality in El Salvador, so building climate resilience is of paramount importance for the Central American nation. Demonstrating its commitment to this, the Government of El Salvador brought together key national stakeholders and experts in December 2016 to identify ways to scale up climate change investment and financing flows in key government sectors.

The event, supported by the Green Climate Fund Readiness Programme, coincided with the final stage of a government-led analysis of current public expenditure on climate change adaptation and mitigation, known as a Climate Public Expenditure Institutional Review (CPEIR). The recent assessments of investment and financial flows identify financial gaps in implementing the country’s national climate targets - a necessary foundation before applying for supplementary funding from climate financing sources such as the Green Climate Fund to improve climate change mitigation and resilience in the country.

It was acknowledged that there needs to be increased understanding among key stakeholders, particularly national policymakers and institution/ministerial representatives, of their own and their institutions’ roles in combatting climate change in the country, as well as the need for financial information.

The stakeholder consultation brought together members of the National Climate Finance Committee, comprising members of the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, as well as the Planning Secretariat of the Presidency. Participants examined El Salvador’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), which have been developed based on the commitments made at the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris in December 2015, and discussed the need for a clear view on both financial needs and pathways to implement them. These commitments represent a country’s climate policies and its actions to reduce emissions and adapt to climate change in many sectors by a set date. NDCs in El Salvador comprise 30 commitments linked to the National Climate Change Plan, aimed at the decarbonisation of energy supply by increasing the use of renewable energy, improving energy efficiency, better land management, and improved urban planning and transportation.

The stakeholder consultation was followed by a three-day technical training for the team of national experts from key sectors: energy, agriculture, water, infrastructure and health. The training examined the methodology to assess the necessary shifts and increases of climate investments, and equipped the team to carry out the financial assessments over the coming months.

El Salvador set out its path towards achieving its COP 21 commitments, and continued support from the Green Climate Fund Readiness Programme to secure additional funding to implement these commitments is playing an important role in that.