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Environmental Finance Services
June 2009

UNDP Environment & Energy Group

Photography: Cover: Fisherman ©Claudio Vasquez Rojas; Windmills ©iStockpho; UNDP Library: Family of Bangladesh ©UNDP; UN Library: Tea Plantation in Tanzania ©B.Wolff; Solar Panel ©Tim McKulka; SR Library: Okavango Delta

Environmental Finance Services

The United Nations Development Programme


n theground in 166 countries, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the UN’s global development network, connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build better lives. Together with its development partners, UNDP helps to coordinate and ensure the most effective use of UN and other international aid resources. Environment and sustainable development is one ofUNDP’s four key areas of work, together with poverty reduction, improved governance, and crisis prevention and recovery. The world faces a number of inter-connected crises – from poverty and inequality, to food insecurity and civil unrest, battered financial markets, soaring energy costs and the threat of climate change. If left unchecked, environmental degradation is likely to result in further andmore severe social and economic crises in the not-too-distant future.

UNDP disbursements on environment, 2004-2007 by source of funds (in US dollars) Source of funds
Global Environment Facility Montreal Protocol (MLF) Regular resources Programme countries Others donors

760,735,562 103,996,427 181,771,066 391,859,784 143,437,790

48.1% 6.6% 11.5% 24.7% 9.1%



UNDP believes that if environmental management is treated not as a constraint but as an opportunity, it can become part of the solution. If policies, skills and incentives are developed to encourage investments in environmentally-friendly and climate-friendly businesses such as energy efficiency, renewable energy, sustainable transportation, and

Box1: Highlights of UNDPResults in Environment (2005-2009)

An estimated 413 million tonnes of CO2 emissions were avoided as a result of projects being funded by GEF and active in mid-2008. This is almost equal to the total CO2 emitted in Mexico in 2004. 127 new protected areas covering more than 10 million hectares were created in 50 countries through the implementation of 65 biodiversity projects funded by GEF.This is roughly equivalent to 2.5 times the total surface area of Switzerland. Over 100 countries and 20 international water bodies are being assisted by UNDP to ensure long-term sustainability including the Danube, Nile and Tumen rivers; the Black, Caspian and East Asian Seas; lakes Tanganyika and Baikal; and the small island developing states of the Pacific and Caribbean. 63,000 tonnes of ozonedepleting substances (ODS) have been eliminated since 2001 in 100 countries with UNDP assistance under the Montreal Protocol, which also brought climate benefits as most ODS are also powerful greenhouse gases.




2 Environmental Finance Services

greening of commodity supply chains, not only can environmental challenges be addressed but new economic opportunities and millionsof new jobs can be created. In financial terms, UNDP is one of the largest brokers of environmental grants in the developing world, having disbursed US$ 1.58 billion directly and leveraged over US$ 3 billion in co-financing from public and private sources to support sustainable development during 2004-2007.

could be replaced by savannah with significant losses to biodiversity; and sea level risecould increase inundation, storm surges and erosion in coastal areas, islands and river deltas in Asia, the Pacific and the Caribbean. In all of this, it is often the poorest people who face the greatest risks, whether in the drylands of Africa, the river deltas of Asia, the tropical forests of Latin America, or the megacities emerging all over the developing world. These very same people...
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