November 10th 2020 - The Green Climate Fund (GCF) approved a US $82 million project to combat deforestation and promote sustainable forest management in Argentina, and US $66.7 million for a project in Guatemala that will increase the resilience of the country's most vulnerable farmers to the impacts of climate change.
The RELIVE project in Guatemala will benefit 583 thousand people indirectly, and will provide direct technical assistance to 116 thousand small farmers –most of them with indigenous ancestry of the Achi, Quechi, Mopan and Chorti ethnic groups, and including 46 thousand women– in five departments of the country.
RELIVE has a total budget of US $ 66.7 million, of which the Green Climate Fund will provide US $ 29.8 million and the Government of Guatemala and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), will contribute US $ 36.84 million.
The funds destined for Argentina were granted under the REDD + Results-Based Payments Pilot Program, thanks to the fact that said country managed to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions in the 2014-2016 period by more than 165 million tons of CO2 equivalent, fighting deforestation in the regions of the Chaqueño Park, the Bolivian Tucuman Forest, the Espinal and the Misionera Forest.
RELIVE in Guatemala
RELIVE will help vulnerable farmers in the Dry Corridor to adapt to the impacts of climate change through climate-resilient agricultural and water management practices.
Small farmers will learn to use improved climate information systems, improved crop varieties, and soil and water management techniques: 20,000 families will improve their access to clean water, and will be more resilient to drought and heat waves thanks to the efficient management of water for agriculture.
The project is expected to avoid the emission of 1 million tons of CO2 equivalent, 8% of the goal that the country has committed to before the Climate Change Convention. It will be implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food (MAGA), the National Forest Institute (INAB) and the German Cooperation Agency (GIZ), with support from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
“We are very pleased with the approach of the RELIVE project, its comprehensive measures and the large population that it will benefitt, particularly indigenous populations, as well as the strong participation that women will have. The synergies that it will develop in rural territories will have a great impact for the country, since it will allow the resilience and recovery of natural resources in a geographic area of great interest to the country,” said Mario Rojas, Minister of Environment and Natural Resources of Guatemala.
Over 7 years, the project will improve food security through better agroforestry practices, improved access to water and the restoration of landscapes. It will develop local and national governance mechanisms, and promote the active participation of women in food systems and natural resources management; likewise, they will receive support to develop local and regional trade in agroforestry products, coffee, cocoa, fruit trees, vegetables, timber and non-timber products.
Argentina: recognition of results
The US $ 82 million approved by the Green Climate Fund will be used for a 6-year project that will help Argentina advance towards sustainable development and to achieve its goals set under the Paris Agreement.
The project will establish 7 sustainable forest basins, working with 7 000 producers, 6 strategic plans for fire prevention, 95 comprehensive community management plans and 92 forest management plans with integrated livestock that will directly benefit 2,900 families from local and indigenous communities.
"This project contributes to our strategic vision of stopping deforestation, accompanying the development of family farmers and indigenous communities, preventing and controlling forest fires, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions to stop global warming," said Juan Cabandié, Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development of Argentina.
The project will be executed by the Ministry of the Environment and Sustainable Development and FAO, and will promote forest management, forest restoration, sustainable use of wood and non-wood forest products, integrated livestock practices, and prevention and early response to forest fires.
Working with rural communities, women and indigenous peoples who live and depend on forests, as well as with other key actors in the country, such as the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the UN Environment Program (UNEP) the project will increase economic and social opportunities through the diversification of livelihoods and market opportunities.
Argentina will promote sustainable livestock practices that protect native forests and strengthen local and national forest governance. The project will improve greenhouse gas emission reporting, accounting and registry, and will contribute to the country’s long-term low-emissions development strategy.
“As President Alberto Fernández has maintained, in our government the fight against climate change is a State policy. Argentina is one of the countries that most reduced its emissions due to deforestation, presented a robust proposal, anchored in an inclusive, democratic and deforestation-free perspective on territorial development. Achieving this recognition encourages and motivates us to redouble our efforts", said Cabandié.