We, collectively, are failing to protect the global commons
But we are failing, collectively, to protect the global commons We have reached or exceeded the carrying capacity of several of the earth’s ecosystems. We have reached or exceeded the carrying capacity of several of the earth’s ecosystems. The next decade presents challenges unprecedented in the history of humankind
Credit: Azote Images/Stockholm Resilience Centre Pushing Planetary Boundaries
Greenland surface melt measurements from three satellites Source: NASA, 2012 July 8, 2012 July 12, 2012
“The population problem has no technical solution; it requires a fundamental extension in morality” The Tragedy of the Commons, Garrett Hardin “If all herders take individually rational economic decisions, the common will be depleted or even destroyed, to the detriment of all” – Garrett Hardin, The Tragedy of Commons, 1968
For that which is common to the greatest number has the least care bestowed upon it. Every one thinks chiefly of his own, hardly at all of the common interest; and only when he is himself concerned as an individual. For besides other considerations, everybody is more inclined to neglect the duty which he expects another to fulfill. Aristotle (384-322 BC)
The Global Environment Facility Born in the Spirit of the Earth Summit in Rio 1992….
The Global Environment Facility (GEF) Established in 1991 Unites 182 member governments Focal Areas: – Biodiversity – Climate Change – International Waters – Land Degradation – Chemicals (POPs, Ozone Layer)
The Global Environment Facility (GEF) The financial mechanism of the main multilateral environmental agreements The largest public funder worldwide of projects aiming to generate global environmental benefits USD 11.5 billion allocated USD 57 billion in co-financing Over 3,215 projects GEF SGP: Over 16,030 small grants to CSOs, totaling USD 653.2 million
There can be no separation between development and environment, as they are co-dependent. Healthy ecosystems are essential to secure human health, food, energy and water, and ultimately sustainable development. Such ideas have yet to be fully mainstreamed and their adoption continues to be hampered by tough barriers in the political decision-making process. The GEF is and must remain a champion of the Global Common s
Goals for the Global Environment …reaffirmed 20 years later as the leading environmental finance institution 20 Years later – a celebration?
Under such pressures, incremental environmental strategies alone will simply not suffice. These changes compel the GEF to equip itself to promote Transformational Change
The GEF is uniquely positioned to catalyze the transformational change necessary to help turn around the worrisome trends in the global environment. However, the protection of the global commons, which is the GEF’s primary mandate, is not always a critical priority in international politics. The proliferation of funds is complicating the international financial landscape, and fiscal pressures confronting developed countries will remain for the foreseeable future. GEF 2020 and Beyond