Forum wins improved recognition for Pacific climate concerns

Pacific 350 Climate warriors in a "we are fighting" climate change action in Paris. Image:

The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) has been given observer status in the board of the UN Green Climate Fund (GCF), Secretary-General Dame Meg Taylor has announced.

Observer status grants the PIFS with the privilege of participating and overseeing the developments within the UN Green Climate Fund.

According to Dame Meg, the GCF board has said it would invest up to US$2.5 billion on climate change projects in 2016, and PIFS observer status would improve opportunities for cooperation between the Pacific region and the GCF.

The UN GCF was established with a mission to advance the goal of keeping the temperature increase on Earth below 2 deg Celsius.

The fund is a global initiative to respond to climate change by investing in low-emission and climate-resilient development.

Two forum countries already on the board are Australia and Samoa.

Australia is the current co-chair and Samoa represents the Small Island Developing States.

The Cook Islands early this month received US$75,000 from the GCF to strengthen capacity “to access finance through GCF”.

It is the first country in the Pacific and the Small Island Developing States to receive such funding.

The grant will help Cook Islands strengthen clean development mechanism (CDM) projects concerning the reduction of emissions. Apart from the Cook Islands, Fiji late last year received funding from GCF for its urban water supply and wastewater management project.

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