28 May 2014
Magdy Martínez-Solimán, Director, a.i., Bureau for Development Policy
Women prepare fish using a solar-powered oven as part of a project funded by GEF's Small Grants Programme. Photo: UNDP Mauritania.
Delegates from 183 countries, intergovernmental organizations and civil society organizations are meeting this week in Mexico to participate in the Fifth Assembly of the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The GEF Assembly, the governing body of the GEF partnership, is a landmark event for the GEF, occurring every four years. UNDP is one of the founding implementing agencies of the GEF, a partnership of governments, implementing agencies and civil society that has provided over US $12.5 billion in grants for 3,690 projects in 165 countries to address global environmental challenges. Through its Small Grants Programme (SGP) implemented by UNDP, the GEF has also made more than 16,000 small grants directly to civil society and community-based organizations, totaling US $653.2 million. UNDP has helped over 120 countries in the last four years alone to access more than US $1.9 billion from GEF-managed funds and associated cost sharing to address environmental challenges for sustainable development. UNDP believes that the GEF is a critical instrument for financing sustainable development in developing countries. UNDP’s delegation to the GEF Assembly will be advocating our belief that environmental sustainability is critical to poverty eradication, enhanced resilience and inclusive and sustainable growth. This is reflected in the areas of