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FAO and the GEF

Partnering for Sustainable Agriculture and the Environment

FAO at the Sixth GEF Assembly in Viet Nam 2018

The Sixth Assembly of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and associated meetings will take place from 23-29 June 2018 at the Furama International Conference Center in Da Nang, Viet Nam.

As one of its longstanding partners, FAO will continue helping countries identify, develop and implement GEF-eligible projects related to food systems and landscape restoration, sustainable forest management, sustainable cities, biodiversity, climate change, land degradation, blue economy, and chemicals. 

Held once every four years, the Assembly week will see the closure of the current replenishment cycle (GEF-6) and an official launch of the next four year replenishment phase, known as GEF-7. The GEF Governing body, consisting of 183 member countries, will approve the new programming directions for GEF-7, a strategy document to address the most pressing issues concerning the environment.

FAO at High-level Round Tables

FAO, along with several leaders from the development sector, civil society, environmental ministries and the private sector has been invited by the GEF Secretariat to speak at the opening Plenary Sessions and to participate in the High-level Round tables that will dig deeper into the new themes in GEF-7.

27 June 2018 

Round Table on Food, Land Use and Restoration
14:00-17:00

How the world’s food systems and land use policies evolve will have major implications for the health of the planet. The world needs a more sustainable food system, one that embeds sustainability from farm to fork, generates agricultural commodities without deforestation and habitat conversion, and restores soils and degraded areas.

Ms. Maria Helena Semedo, Deputy Director-General, Climate and Natural Resources, FAO will participate in this interactive round table, which will examine the emerging opportunities for achieving sustainable food and land systems, and the role that governments and the private sector can play. 

 

Round Table on Blue Economy
14:00-17:00 

The Blue Economy concept identifies the oceans as areas for potential sustainable development. Sustainable use of marine and coastal resources demands a strong local and national understanding of opportunities and threats.

Mr. Arni Mathiesen, Assistant Director General, Fisheries and Aquaculture, FAO
will participate in this interactive round table and will discuss the opportunities and challenges in advancing the Blue Economy, and how GEF and partners can work together for healthy oceans.

 

28 June 2018 

Round Table on Gender
09:00-10:30 

Women, who constitute half of the world’s population and are half of the world’s resource managers, are essential to every aspect of safeguarding the environment for future generations. But too often, women’s needs, roles, and leadership are unrecognized or undervalued. 

Ms. Maria Helena Semedo, Deputy Director-General, Climate and Natural Resources, FAO will participate in this round table, which will facilitate a discussion around effective entry points to promote gender equality in order to tackle drivers of environmental degradation, and concrete opportunities on how the environmental community can better support gender-responsive policy and financing. 

 

Side Events with FAO

24 June 2018 

Capacity Building Initiative for Transparency (CBIT): Strengthening national capacities to meet enhanced transparency requirements 
12:30-14:00, Room Hoi An 2

Co-organized by the four GEF implementing agencies supporting access to CBIT resources (FAO, UNDP, UN Environment and CI), the side event will showcase the collaborative approach taken by the UN Agencies, the GEF and partners in providing support, while Parties and policy-makers will share their experiences, challenges and lessons learned in the context of Enhanced Transparency Framework.

 

SDG 15 Life on Land: Maximizing Global Environmental Benefits of Drylands 
18:00-19:30, Room Hoi An 1  

The event will highlight methods, approaches and findings of the Global Drylands Assessment, developed by FAO in collaboration with Google and many partners, contributing to the implementation of the “Rome Promise on Monitoring and Assessment of Drylands for Sustainable Management and Restoration”.

FAO and partners, particularly leading member countries, will also highlight successful sustainable management and restoration approaches in action, addressing environmental degradation while ensuring socio-economic and environmental benefits for vulnerable dryland communities – particularly within the context of Land Degradation Neutrality (LDN) under SDG 15 “Life on Land”.

 

25 June 2018 

Inclusive Sustainable Rice Landscapes: Securing Multiple Environmental Benefits and Improved Farmer Welfare
12:30-14:00, Room Phong Nha  

The side event, co-organized by FAO and UN Environment, will begin with a keynote speech, addressing the GEF potential to achieve global environmental benefits through sustainable rice landscapes. This will be followed by a panel dis­cussion comprising high-level representatives from key partners and stakeholders.

FAO will present an integrated approach for GEF-7 – "Inclusive Sustainable Rice Landscapes – Securing Multiple Environmental Benefits and Improved Farmer Welfare".

 

Biodiversity Mainstreaming and Ecosystem Services across Agricultural Sectors 
18:00-19:30, Room Phong Nha 

FAO launched the Biodiversity Mainstreaming Platform, welcomed by the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in its COP Decision XIII/3 and by the FAO Conference at its 40th Session, to build bridges between sectors, identify synergies, align goals and develop integrated cross-sectoral approaches to mainstream biodiversity in the agriculture, forestry and fisheries sectors.

The side event will present high-profile activities by FAO and partners on progress made in the Biodiversity Mainstreaming Platform and key messages from FAO’s forthcoming flagship publication, “The State of the World’s Biodiversity for Food and Agriculture”.

 

26 June 2018 

Blue Economy: Adding Value and Scaling Up GEF-7 Impacts
12:00-13:30, Room My Son 2

FAO invests in Blue Growth and works with many countries to make the transition to a Blue Economy by supporting formulation of Blue Economy Strategies, supporting access to innovative financing instruments and incorporating Blue Economy principles in fisheries and aquaculture best practices.

The interactive session will share and exchange the experience, knowledge and understanding of Blue Economy and related topics. The side will also present recommendations on the key Blue Economy elements that will enhance strategic projects/ programmes under GEF-7 on coastal solutions, and fisheries management to deliver GEF-7 targets efficiently and effectively.

 

Common Oceans Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ) Programme: Achievements so far and looking ahead 
15:00-16:30, Room Phong Nha

The Common Oceans Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ) Program, which started in 2014, has been working with multiple partners to promote efficient and sustainable management of fisheries resources and biodiversity conservation in the ABNJ.

The side event will share experiences and achievements from the Common Oceans ABNJ Program on addressing the many challenges faced by the planet’s marine and freshwater resources. The side event will also present ideas for a potential second phase under GEF-7 for continued impact.

 

Transformational Change in Food Systems and Land Use: A Focus on Smallholders and Value Chains 
16:30-18:00, Room My Son 2

The world’s food and agriculture systems are at a crossroad. The natural resources that underpin food and agriculture are under pressure. Yet by 2050, the world will need 50 percent more food to feed a population of 9.73 billion, which will be more urbanized and affluent and demand more from its food and agriculture sector.

FAO recognizes that the 500 million family farmers & fishers, including indigenous peoples, must be at the center of any transformational change together with government, the private sector and civil society.

The side event will present FAO’s vision and comparative advantages for achieving this transformational change, especially in the context of the new GEF-7 Food Systems and Land use Impact Programme.

 

The Bay of Bengal Large Marine Ecosystem: Reconfirming the Commitment to Collaborate for Sustainable Management 
18:00-19:30, Room Hue

The side event will highlight key outcomes and achievements from the first phase of the Bay of Bengal Large Marine Ecosystem project and will see a reaffirmation of the countries’ commitment towards implementing the Strategic Action Programme (SAP), which has been endorsed by Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

The SAP envisions "A healthy ecosystem and sustainable use of marine living resources for the benefit of the people and countries of the Bay of Bengal Large Marine Ecosystem”.

 

Other events with FAO participation:

  • IFAD's Integrated Approaches: the way forward (25 June 2018, 12:30-14:00, Room Ha Long)
  • Civil Society Forum (26 June 2018, 08:00-17:00)
  • GEF's Gender Partnership (26 June 2018, 16:30-18:00, Room Hoi An 1)
  • IUCN's Form Commitments to Action - GEF Support in Scaling Up Restoration (26 June 2018, 18:00-19:30, Room My Son 1)