A couple days ago, some friends asked me about my recent trip to Democratic Republic of Congo for the Forest Investment Program (FIP). I enthused about the forest investment projects I visited, the dedicated colleagues I met, and the value of monitoring and reporting or “M&R.” Pardon? Come again? M&R? Clearly, I had lost my friends.
What do Zambia, Dominica, and Niger have in common?
All three countries are benefitting from the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience (PPCR), a dedicated fund of the Climate Investment Funds which helps countries integrate climate resilience into development planning. To galvanize the planning process, the program also supports a range of priority investments from improving agricultural practices and food security, building climate-resilient water supplies and sanitation infrastructure, monitoring and analyzing weather data, and conducting feasibility studies for climate-resilient housing in coastal areas.
It’s work that is making a difference. I have seen first-hand how the PPCR engagement has helped bring transformative action in each of these countries. I visited Zambia and saw how communities in the Barotse sub-basin of the Zambezi floodplain are standing up to the challenges of climate change. These are communities who’ve had to deal with wild swings in weather patterns that has led to drought and the loss of maize crops on one hand while fluctuating rain patterns have challenged rice planting in another area.
Approximately one-third of Mexico’s total territory—64 million hectares— is covered by tropical and temperate forest ecosystems. It is estimated that about 10 million people live in and around forested areas, many of who directly depend on forest resources for maintaining their livelihoods1.
In Kenya, only 65% of Kenyans have access to basic energy services; however, in recent years the Kenyan government has made plans to capitalize on the country’s untapped store of geothermal electricity. Kenya’s current geothermal capacity is 241 MW, but the government hopes to increase capacity to 5,530 MW by 2030 – close to a 21-fold increase in the country’s geothermal output.
It was a welcome and a reunion. The Forest Investment Program (FIP) met in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) from June 23rd to 25th, and new countries, existing countries, FIP Observers, Multilateral Development Banks, representatives from Indigenous People, the private sector, and civil society all came together to share knowledge and experiences as part of the FIP family.
Payment for Environmental Services (PES) has been already explored widely as a promising tool for natural resources management, particularly for forest conservation in the context of REDD+; but there has been little exploration of its potential for Africa.
We were delighted last month to learn that the committee members of the Climate Investment Funds (CIFs) have decided to extend support to an additional 16 countries, expanding CIF operations to 72 developing and middle-income countries – among them several in Asia and the Pacific.
South Africa’s First Concentrated Solar Power Plant Comes to Life
Supported by IFC and Clean Technology Fund
For years, concentrated solar power (CSP) was mostly viewed as a clean-tech curiosity, a technology whose theoretical promise was bogged down by high costs and high risks. But in many markets, that is changing—and changing fast. In March 2015, the 100MW, $891 million KaXu CSP plant in South Africa completed construction and has started producing power, thus becoming the first utility-scale CSP plant to operate in the developing world.