Nigeria’s Solar IPP Support Programme, is already gathering momentum as the Green Climate Fund (GCF) recently approved a financial aid for the scheme.

The aid to the tune of $100 million will benefit no less than one million households in the country.

Essentially, the $100 million project forms part of the nine new climate resilience and low emission projects totaling $440 million that were endorsed at the 22nd meeting of the GCF Board that ended last week in Songdo, South Korea.

According to sources, the Nigerian project will “reduce or avoid 476,487t CO2 eq on an annual basis, and 9,529,739 t CO2 eq. over the life of the programme”.

Similarly, the programme, among others, is expected to reduce the perceived risks of investing in the Nigerian renewable energy sector and catalyses private sector investment in the area, through a commercial tranche, on a best effort basis.

Also, at the meeting, Yannick Glemarec, who was selected as the GCF’s Executive Director, immediately pledged to strengthen operations, reinforce standards and close policy gaps.

The meeting also approved the selection of nine new project partners to become Accredited Entities to GCF.

Nagmeldin Goutbi Elhassan Mahmoud, Co-Chair, said: “We have taken a series of positive decisions at this Board meeting that set us on a path for a successful and ambitious replenishment of GCF, in particular the selection of Yannick Glemarec as our new Executive Director.”

Co-Chair, Josceline Wheatley, stated: “The Board has worked together in a positive spirit this week to expand our portfolio, improve our governance, and strengthen GCF’s operations.”

Javier Manzanares, Executive Director ad interim, noted: “GCF now has a $5 billion portfolio in 97 countries supporting low-emission, climate-resilient development. With decisions to ensure better governance, new project approvals, and a reinforced readiness programme, this board meeting has left us in great shape for our first replenishment.”

The nine new project approvals bring GCF’s portfolio to a total of 102 projects and programmes, committing $5 billion of GCF resources for climate action in 97 developing countries. Including co-financing, the portfolio channels $17.7 billion in climate finance through its network of 84 Accredited Entities. The new approvals include the first REDD+ results-based payments to be financed, relating to the Brazilian Amazon.

Providing readiness support to build the capacity of developing countries is a key part of GCF’s activities. The Board took note of the evaluation of the Readiness and Preparatory Support Programme by the Independent Evaluation Unit and adopted a work programme and budget that builds upon the evaluation findings and recommendations and provides $122.5 million for 2019 for a new phase of readiness support to developing countries.

Ahead of a pledging conference for the first replenishment of GCF later this year, the board meeting also moved to complete the policies and standards that guide GCF’s climate activities. New investment criteria indicators will strengthen the implementation of the investment framework, whilst a policy on cancellation and restructuring of projects will further reinforce the good management of its portfolio of projects.

The board also welcomed recommendations from the Independent Evaluation Unit on how to improve the Results Management Framework, as well as a management response and action plan. The adoption of a policy on protection from sexual exploitation, sexual abuse and sexual harassment, together with guidelines and procedures for the Independent Redress Mechanism ensures that GCF remains at the forefront of international efforts on safeguards and standards.

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