Markets working to support sustainable development

Global Environment Facility (GEF)

The Global Environmental Facility (GEF) is an independent financial organisation that invests in projects related to biodiversity, climate change, international waters, land degradation, the ozone layer, and persistent organic pollutants. 

The GEF serves as financial mechanism for the following conventions:
The GEF, although not linked formally to the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer (MP), also supports implementation of the Protocol in countries with economies in transition.


Market coverage: 

The GEF links the 183 member governments with international institutions such as UN agencies, the World Bank and other international development banks. Since it was established in 1991, it has provided $11.5 billion in grants and has leveraged $57 billion in co-financing for over 3,215 projects in over 165 countries. In addition, through its Small Grants Programme (SGP), the GEF has also made more than 16,030 small grants directly to civil society and community based organizations, totaling $653.2 million. 

Background information: 

The GEF was established in 1991 as a pilot project of the World Bank. In 1994 GEF was restructured and became its own separate institution and is now based in Washington DC, USA. The Assembly (which represents member countries) meets at least once every 3 to 4 years to review and evaluate GEF policies and projects.

Funding source: 

The GEF is funded by member government contributions.

Notable information: 

The GEF is a major channel for investment in environmental projects in low income countries. As the financial mechanism for a number of international agreements it is a key play in environmental governance worldwide.