GEF seeking Proposals for a $10 million Challenge Program for Adaptation Innovation

Deadline: 1 September 2019

The Global Environment Facility (GEF) is seeking proposals for a US$10 million Challenge Program for Adaptation Innovation to harness the potential of the private sector actors.

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The Challenge Program aims to contribute to the global goal on adaptation for the Paris Agreement, by supporting initiatives to increase resilience to the adverse impacts of climate change and variability in vulnerable developing countries, and by supporting efforts to build adaptive capacity.

The Challenge Program for Adaptation Innovation seeks to identify, test and highlight innovative adaptation approaches with potential to be replicated and scaled up through cooperation with institutional investors, bilateral or multilateral providers of climate finance, and other sources.

By focusing on continuous innovation and learning with regard to private adaptation solutions, the Challenge Program aims to demonstrate potentially scalable, bankable or otherwise fundable investment approaches, business models, partnerships and technologies.

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The Challenge Program aims to promote innovation in adaptation technologies and techniques by supporting sustainable innovation ecosystems for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), thereby creating private sector opportunities to reduce climate change vulnerabilities. Fostering innovation and entrepreneurship environments for technologies in the resilience space will allow developing countries to build more sustainable and resilient economies.

The Challenge Program can support entrepreneurship development, incubators, seed funding, venture capital and other potentially impactful approaches.

The GEF supports climate adaptation efforts mainly through the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) and the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF).

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Since their inception in 2001, the GEF provided over US$1.5 billion in grant financing and mobilized more than US$7 billion from other sources for 330 adaptation projects in 130 countries, including each of the 47 least developed countries (LDCs).

Themes

All sectors and themes are eligible under the Challenge Program, while an emphasis is placed on select priority themes as follows:

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  • Entrepreneurship development in the adaptation and climate resilience space;
  • Promoting local private sector actors, especially micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, which are critical for resilient economies and communities in developing countries, providing services and access to hard-to-reach populations;
  • Strategic multi-stakeholder partnerships, alliances, and incubators as catalyzers of larger scale financing and market developers;
  • Initiatives that address climate security;
  • Resilience technology transfer including for weather analytics and monitoring, catastrophe and climate risk modeling, climate insurance, efficient irrigation and drinking water supply systems;
  • Resilient food storage, distribution and supply chains for agricultural and commodity supply chains, and enhancing resilience of small land-holders;
  • Innovative business models and investment approaches, seed funding and venture capital approaches to improve access to finance for private sector solutions to climate change, including facilities or structures that support sustainable project pipeline development, aggregation or linkages to bond and other capital markets; and
  • Enhancing gender-responsiveness in private sector climate change adaptation by supporting ownership and active participation of female stakeholders and gender-specific adaptation strategies.

Pre-Selection Criteria

The pre-selection process aims at identifying and prioritizing suitable projects and programs for admission in the formal project cycle, so that the number and size of the proposals entering the formal cycle matches the funds that are available.

Pre-selection aims to ensure that the following criteria are taken into consideration:

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  • Project/program quality;
  • Equitable distribution among eligible countries and regions;
  • Degree of innovation;
  • Potential to catalyze private sector for climate change adaptation at scale; and
  • Support for priority sectors and themes.

All sectors and themes are eligible under the Challenge Program, while an emphasis is placed on select priority themes as follows:

(a) Entrepreneurship development in the adaptation and climate resilience space;

(b) Promoting local private sector actors, especially micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, which are critical for resilient economies and communities in developing countries, providing services and access to hard-to-reach populations;

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(c) Strategic multi-stakeholder partnerships2, alliances, and incubators as catalyzers of larger scale financing and market developers;

(d) Initiatives that address climate security;

(e) Resilience technology transfer including for weather analytics and monitoring, catastrophe and climate risk modeling, climate insurance, efficient irrigation and drinking water supply systems;

(f) Resilient food storage, distribution and supply chains for agricultural and commodity supply chains, and enhancing resilience of small land-holders;

(g) Innovative business models and investment approaches, seed funding and venture capital approaches to improve access to finance for private sector solutions to climate change, including facilities or structures that support sustainable project pipeline development, aggregation or linkages to bond and other capital markets; and

(h) Enhancing gender-responsiveness in private sector climate change adaptation by supporting ownership and active participation of female stakeholders and gender-specific adaptation strategies.

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Eligibility Criteria

The initial envelope of US$10 million for the Challenge Program includes US$5 million from the SCCF and US$5 million from the LDCF. All developing countries are eligible to benefit from SCCF funding under the Challenge Program, while only LDCs are eligible for Challenge Program resources that are drawn from the LDCF global/regional set-aside. Resources come from the global/regional set aside under the LDCF, and the SCCF.

Application Modality

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  • Concept notes should be no more than three pages, and should indicate proposed objectives, activities, adaptation benefits, requested amount of LDCF/SCCF resources, how the proposal meets the pre-selection criteria mentioned above, targeted countries/regions, and if applicable also the financial terms. The applicants are also requested to summarize why support from the Challenge Program is needed. Concepts note are not based on templates and can be submitted formless, however, need to address the topics mentioned above.
  • Pre-selected proposals for the Challenge Program will follow the GEF Project and Program Cycle Policy and Guidelines. GEF partner Agencies will submit full proposals for the review of the GEF Secretariat in the form of a Project Information Form (PIF) through the GEF Portal.
  • Concept notes will be screened by the GEF Secretariat based on the pre-selection criteria, with the support of its Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP). In cases where concept notes include non-grant financial instruments, the GEF Secretariat may also engage independent financial experts to complement the standard review process.
  • Concept notes should request no more than US$2 million from the LDCF or SCCF. The minimum amount of funding per submission is US$500,000.
  • Resources are not taken from the cumulative country ceiling of the LDCF. Letters of endorsement from the GEF Operational Focal Point are not required in the following two cases:
    • Projects or Programs in which the beneficiaries are private sector actors exclusively;
    • Projects or Programs in which there are public sector beneficiaries in more than one country.

How to Apply

Concept Notes must be submitted by email at the address given on the website.

For more information, visit http://bit.ly/2TtNVEB

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  • Avatar Kassaye Haile says:

    Thank you for the information on the GEF, LDCF.
    When is the deadline for submitting the concept note?

    • Avatar Ritu at fundsforNGOs says:

      Hi Kassaye Haile,

      Deadline is 1 September 2019. For more information regarding eligibility criteria, application process and more, please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good Luck!

  • Avatar Kassaye Haile says:

    Sorry, I found the dead line on the website.

    • Avatar Ritu at fundsforNGOs says:

      Hi Kassaye Haile,

      Deadline is 1 September 2019. For more information regarding eligibility criteria, application process and more, please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good Luck!

  • Avatar Motto Anthony says:

    Excellent, am going to participate!

  • Avatar Bernard S. Davies says:

    Can an NGO apply to empower SMEs and other private actors in rural areas?

    • Avatar Reena says:

      Hi Bernard S. Davies,

      Thank you for your interest in the opportunity.

      To get detailed information on eligibility criteria and application requirements, please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good Luck!

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