ACTS and Sussex University work together to boost Africa’s access to climate change funds

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Press release / African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS) (source)
Nairobi, Kenya
27 July 2018

ACTS partners with UK varsity to boost Africa’s access to climate change funds

Kenya’s top climate think tank has partnered with a British university to drive policies to tackle climate change. The Africa Centre for Technology Studies and the University of Sussex have developed a mechanism to enable African countries to tap into the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the global fund for innovators tackling climate change.

The mechanism allows professionals and policymakers within the climate change sphere to develop viable funding proposals. The model, known as Climate Relevant Innovation-systems Builders (CRIBs) is a product of the Africa Sustainability Hub which is domiciled at ACTS offices in Nairobi.

Dr. Rob Byrne from the University of Sussex, who was one of the lead researchers noted that the goal of the mechanism was to ensure that more African countries are able to leverage on the systems-approach template provided in the model to access the funding.

“Previously, the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) investments favoured the developed countries than the developing nations where climate change has had a huge impact on populations. Africa only got 2% of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) investments while countries like China took up over 50% of these investments,” Dr. Byrne.

The CRIBs approach is recognized by the Green Climate Fund board as a mechanism that would enable effective engagements with different stakeholders for climate funding.

Dr. Joanes Atela, the Head of Climate Resilient Economies at ACTS, who spearheaded the partnership in Kenya, welcomed the set of processes and templates and the potential for successful funding of important projects in Kenya to mitigate the effects of climate change, both at the national level and in the counties.

“The CRIBs approach for climate financing is a novel systems-approach mechanism that seeks to build capacity of governments, institutions and policy in Sub-Sahara Africa on climate financing,” said Dr Atela.

The CRIBs model has attracted the attention of the African Union and now ACTS and its experts have been invited to help spread the adoption of the model to different regional blocs within the continent.

“In August a high-level meeting of the AU has invited ACTs to further engage on these discussions,” said Dr. Atela.

Dr. Atela and Dr. Byrne spoke at the end of two-week regional meeting to train leading climate change experts and innovators from Kenya, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. The training sought to enable the policy makers to leverage on international climate funding for climate change-compatible economic development and poverty reduction. CRIBs augments previous projects which have sought to address how to leverage policy mechanisms to fund collaborative Research and Development whilst enhancing the delivery of climate technology transfer under the Paris Climate Agreement.

Peter Odhengo, an advisor to the government of Kenya on climate related policies said most of the funding proposals for climate change projects are rejected because they lack critical elements stipulated by the GCF board.

“There are six investment criteria that most proposals lack which means they are dead on arrival and thus cannot be funded. Our doors are open for the various stakeholders seeking clarifications on these issues. Treasury and the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) are the NDA’s responsible for engaging stakeholders on Climate Change on the GCF in Kenya,” said Odhengo.

ACTS and the University of Sussex have just conducted a two weeks training for policymakers from Kenya, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda to enable them formulate project proposals for clean energy access, environment and climate change mitigation and adaptation on the preparation of GCF proposals using the CRIBs approach.

“The CRIBs approach has enabled me to understand the current international climate policy on climate change and clean energy, funding options for clean energy access as well as promoting energy efficiency and understand the eco-system of the GCF funding mechanism which had not been clear before. I’m now able to advice various stakeholders on the GCF processes using the CRIBs approach in Uganda and enable them strategise on accessing the global fund for the diverse projects on climate change,” notes Ms. Mildred Namiira, an economist from Uganda’s Ministry of Water.

Notes to the editor

The GCF was established to mobilize climate finance to support scaled up mitigation and adaptation action during the COP 16 (United Nations Climate Change Conference) in Cancun in 2010 as an operating entity of the financial mechanism of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC).
The Climate Relevant Innovation-systems Builders (CRIBs) mechanism incorporates a systems-approach mode of operation for engagements and strategies for policy makers when developing proposals for the Green Climate Fund (GCF)

The CRIBs approach seeks to build networks of diverse stakeholders where it can foster and share learnings that seeks to promote innovative ideas as it engages policy makers on interlinked systems and processes to enable them formulate effective fundable proposals to the GCF. This mechanism also seeks to further engage and build the capacity of national bodies in the countries responsible for the GCF known as the National Designated Authorities (NDA’S) and to effectively support stakeholders in the various countries for GCF purposes.

About ACTS

The African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS) is a pioneering development research think tank on harnessing applications of science, technology and innovation policies for sustainable development in Africa. ACTS is an Intergovernmental organization founded in 1988 to pursue policy oriented research towards strengthening the capacity of African countries and institutions to harness science and technology for sustainable development.  ACTS envisions a sustainable economic, social and environmental future for Africa, through science, technology and innovation.

ACTS remains among the leading institutions working on sustainable development in Africa. In 2013, it was rated amongst the top Environment Think Tanks in Africa and the world. In 2016 ACTS was ranked among the top 3 climate change think tanks by ICCG Rankings.

ACTS is also a past winner (1991) of the Justinian Rweyemamu Prize from CODESRIA (Africa’s Social Science Research Council) for its work in expanding the knowledge base for Africa’s development.

For more information contact:
Mrs. Fiona Imbali, Communications
ACTS on F.Imbali [at]
Telephone: 0722260805

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