The Federal Government has said that it had so far received $23 million dollars in four years from Global Environmental Facility (GEF) to implement climate change, biodiversity and land degradation projects.
The Desk Officer of GEF and Assistant Director at the Ministry of Environment, Mrs Halima Mohammed, who made this known at a two-day National Steering Committee Meeting in Abuja on Tuesday, said the allocation was under the 5th replenishment circle, covering July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2014.
According to her, the allocation is under the System for Transparent Allocation of Resources (STAR), which allows GEF to allocate funds to countries to implement projects in specific focal areas.
The National Steering Committee meeting was convened to review the progress of GEF’s activities in Nigeria and to update stakeholders on the ongoing projects, streamline projects proposal for GEF-6 cycle and to harmonise ideas on exhibition being planned by Nigeria at the fifth GEF Assembly in Cancun, Mexico, among others.
Mohammed said Nigeria had implemented all its projects under the fifth cycle with the exception of two awaiting approval from the GEF council.
She listed ongoing GEF projects in the country to include Conservation and Sustainable Management of Niger Delta Biodiversity; Sustainable Urban Transportation; and Setting up Mini- Grids based on Photo Voltaic (PV), Hydro and Biomass Sources.
Others are Promoting Energy Efficiency in Public and Residential Sectors; Less Burnt for a Clean Earth: Minimisation of Dioxin Emission from Open Burning Sources and Small Grant Programme for Civil Society Organisations.
On Fadama III, she mentioned Scaling up of Sustainable Land Management; Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) containing equipment management and disposal; and Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management (NEWMAP): Component of Great Green Wall Initiative.
Also listed were Lake Chad Regional and Natural Resources Conservation and Regional Project on Equatorial Africa Deposition Network.
She said that GEF had three funding windows, namely the full size, the medium size and the small grants.
According to her, small grants component of GEF is a grant below 50,000 dollars, medium size is between 500,000 and two million dollars, while the full size is from two million dollars and above.
She said Nigeria could benefit more from GEF by building the capacity of its staff.
In addition, she suggested that project proponents should forward well-articulated concept to the GEF Operational Focal Point for Endorsement.
“The project proponent, in collaboration with the operational focal point, should ensure that prompt comments on the proposals are made by relevant offices of the GEF focal areas. The comments should be reverted to the project proponent for incorporation and further development,” she said.
Adding that the, “Project proponents should also explore the opportunity offered through the Implementing Agencies.”’
The implementing agencies, she said, were UNDP, World Bank, FAO, UNIDO, ADB, UNEP and IFAD, among others.