COP26 Announcements

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The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced multiple initiatives to combat the climate crisis at COP26.

At the World Leaders’ Summit, President Biden announced three key initiatives that USAID will play a significant role in implementing. Administrator Samantha Power announced a suite of additional USAID initiatives, targets, and partnerships to support these Presidential initiatives and other Agency priorities.


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White House Announcements

President’s Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience (PREPARE)

President Biden announced his Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience (PREPARE) that includes an ambitious set of targets. PREPARE will support developing countries and communities in vulnerable situations around the world in their efforts to adapt to and manage the impacts of climate change. These impacts are already being felt, and USAID brings significant experience to bear on supporting equitable, inclusive climate resilience in developing countries.

PREPARE activates a coordinated, whole-of-government approach and will serve as the framework that brings together the diplomatic, development, and technical expertise of the United States to support more than half a billion people in developing countries to adapt to and manage the impacts of climate change through locally-led development by 2030. PREPARE will serve as the cornerstone of the U.S. government response to the increasing impacts of the global climate crisis.

USAID is central to the PREPARE response, utilizing its long-standing, on-the-ground partnerships to strengthen the climate resilience of governments and communities through sustainable development and humanitarian assistance. You can find more information under the November 8 “USAID and PREPARE” announcement below.

Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate (AIM for Climate)

At COP26, President Biden highlighted USAID’s commitment to the Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate (AIM for Climate) to support research and innovation in climate-smart agriculture. AIM for Climate is a pioneering initiative led by the United States and the United Arab Emirates that is focused on increasing investment and enabling greater public-private and cross-sectoral partnerships to drive climate-smart agriculture and food systems. This initiative has garnered global momentum with more than 80 partners, including 33 countries. The United States will mobilize $1 billion over five years for AIM for Climate. USAID is working in concert with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the State Department’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate on AIM for Climate.

USAID’s commitments to climate-smart agriculture include at least $215 million over five years to support the critical work of CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future, to help 200 million people raise agricultural productivity in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa by 25 percent by 2030. As a founding member of CGIAR, USAID is one of the largest financial donors, garnering significant return on investment: for every $1 invested in CGIAR, there are $10 of benefits. CGIAR investments in wheat alone generate over $2 billion per year in value and food security gains for hundreds of millions of low-income people around the world. More broadly, CGIAR research is estimated to have lifted food production in developing countries by seven to eight percent, and in some of the most vulnerable areas, by much larger amounts.

Plan to Conserve Global Forests: Critical Carbon Sinks

President Biden announced the Plan to Conserve Global Forests: Critical Carbon Sinks. This plan—the first of its kind for the U.S. government—outlines how the U.S. will help protect the Amazon rainforest and other critical ecosystems worldwide that sequester large quantities of greenhouse gases. Conserving these ecosystems is essential for combating the climate crisis.

The Plan is a decade-long effort to conserve forests and other terrestrial and coastal ecosystems that serve as critical carbon sinks. The Plan supports collective goals the United States has previously endorsed, including to strive to end natural forest loss by 2030; to significantly increase the rate of global restoration of degraded landscapes and forestlands; and to slow, halt, and reverse forest cover and carbon loss.

The Plan outlines four key objectives:

  1. Incentivize forest and ecosystem conservation and forest landscape restoration;
  2. Catalyze private sector investment, finance, and action to conserve critical carbon sinks;
  3. Build long-term capacity, and support the data and systems that enhance accountability;
  4. Increase ambition for climate and conservation action.

USAID will play a core part of the plan as a global leader in translating climate change mitigation and conservation ambition into impact. You can find more information on USAID’s specific contributions to the Plan under the November 3 announcement on “USAID Announces Major Programs to Conserve Critical Carbon Sinks” below.


USAID logo

USAID Announcements and Targets

November 3, 2021

USAID Announces Major Programs to Conserve Critical Carbon Sinks

USAID announced programs in support of the Plan to Conserve Global Forests: Critical Carbon Sinks, which President Biden announced at COP26 on November 2.

In alignment with President Biden’s plan, USAID announced a new target to support the protection, restoration, or management of 100 million hectares of critical landscapes—an area more than twice the size of California—by 2030. This target will be achieved through a series of new and forthcoming programs, including:

  • Sustainable Environmental Governance Across Regions – a new $32.7 million program that will support Indonesia in achieving its Paris Agreement Nationally Determined Contribution targets in forests and land use change. The program is expected to improve management of seven million hectares of tropical forest and peatland, mobilize $45 million of public and private finance by 2026, and reduce 55 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.
  • Conservation through Economic Empowerment for the Republic of Congo – a new $15 million USAID activity will support local conservation-friendly enterprises and threats to biodiversity, carbon-rich forests, and peatlands in the Republic of Congo.
  • Amazon Alive – a new program that assists the Government of Colombia to improve environmental crime prevention and prosecution to reduce deforestation and increase forest conservation and management for improved economic benefits derived from sustainable natural resource practices. The activity prioritizes interventions in areas that are critical to maintain biodiversity connectivity and are adjacent to natural parks, forest reserves, and Indigenous territories.
  • Forest Data Partnership – a new partnership with the World Resources Institute, Unilever, Google, NASA, and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization to address a key barrier to private investment in forests and restoration: the lack of reliable and accessible data on forests and lands. The partnership will focus on key geographies, including the Amazon Basin, Southeast Asia, and West Africa.
  • Business Case for Collective Landscape Action – a new partnership with Rainforest Alliance, CDP, Clarmondial AG, and Conservation International that will bring together the private sector, governments, and local actors to reduce commodity-driven deforestation, increase forest restoration, conserve biodiversity, and improve livelihoods in key tropical ecosystems.
  • Cocoa for Climate – a new public-private partnership with Barry Callebaut, one of the world’s leading chocolate manufacturers, to combat deforestation and improve large-scale native forest restoration in cocoa supply chains in key countries including Côte d’Ivoire, Ecuador, and Indonesia.

USAID will also align ongoing and forthcoming natural climate solutions and biodiversity programs with the core elements of the plan.

USAID Announces Major Initiative to Reduce Global Greenhouse Gas Emissions

USAID announced a major new initiative to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions as part of the U.S. government’s efforts to combat the climate crisis. USAID will support partner countries to prevent six billion metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by 2030. This cumulative amount is roughly equal to total U.S. domestic emissions for one year or the equivalent of removing more than one billion gasoline powered cars from the road for one year.

This goal will be achieved through a series of new and forthcoming programs that support partner countries to reduce and sequester emissions by transitioning from fossil fuels to renewable energy, improving energy efficiency, and conserving, protecting, and better managing tropical forests, mangroves, and other important ecosystems that sequester large amounts of carbon dioxide among other measures to mitigate climate change.

New programs and commitments that support this target include:

  • Supporting the protection, restoration, or management of 100 million hectares of critical landscapes that serve as important carbon sinks by 2030.
  • Mobilizing billions of dollars in public and private finance for natural climate solutions by 2030.
  • Launching new partnerships with the private sector to reduce deforestation in commodity supply chains.
  • Investing in “green city” strategies to catalyze urban shifts to reduce emissions and improve climate resilience.
  • A U.S.-Europe Energy Bridge to advance the clean energy transition and digital transformation of the energy sector in at least ten countries.
  • A public-private partnership with Apple, Nike, H&M, and Google, among others, to advance clean energy policies and accelerate the deployment of today’s clean, smart, and state-of-the-art technologies across Southeast Asia.

USAID will also align ongoing and forthcoming natural climate solutions and renewable energy programs with the Agency’s forthcoming 2022-2030 Climate Strategy in support of this goal.

USAID Releases Draft Climate Strategy for Public Comment

USAID released a draft of its forthcoming 2022-2030 Climate Strategy for public comment. The draft will be available for voluntary public feedback from November 3-24, 2021. USAID welcomes feedback from any individual or group.

On Earth Day 2021, USAID committed to develop a new Agency Climate Strategy to guide USAID’s efforts to achieve ambitious, targeted, and equitable results in the fight against the climate crisis. This draft strategy is the result of a robust and inclusive engagement process. In developing the strategy, USAID has held more than 40 listening sessions with diverse stakeholder groups around the globe, including with local and international NGOs, implementing partners, the private sector, Indigenous Peoples, youth groups, women’s organizations, foundations, and U.S. Government and USAID staff in Washington, D.C. and in the field.

November 6, 2021

USAID Advances Global Action for Climate Equity

USAID announced a suite of programs and targets to advance Global Action for Climate Equity. This includes a specific goal to support structural changes that improve participation and leadership for Indigenous Peoples, local communities, and women and youth in all their diversity in climate action in at least 40 partner countries by 2030.

Concrete activities and investments to advance equity, inclusion, and accessibility include:

  • USAID gender equality and gender-responsive climate action across climate sectors from policies to programs, including:
    • Investing at least $14 million of the Gender Equity and Equality Action Fund toward gender-responsive climate programming. This includes activities that advance women’s leadership in climate action, increase women’s economic participation in Green Industries, and build women and girls’ resilience to climate shocks and stressors.
    • Advancing partnerships with the U.S. Department of Energy and National Aeronautics and Space Administration to empower women as climate leaders and foster their economic empowerment.
    • Scaling up USAID’s Advancing Gender in the Environment initiative, a partnership with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, to provide tailored support to countries to develop climate change Gender Action Plans connected to their national climate strategies. Central to this will be continued support to the Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and Environment Linkages Center, a platform for gathering resources and tools and forging action on the intersection of GBV and the environment; the Resilient, Inclusive, Sustainable Environments Challenge to prevent and respond to GBV in climate-related sectors; and
    • Promoting gender equity and equality in mitigating and responding to climate change as a strategic priority of the U.S. Government National Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality.
  • USAID is also expanding its support for building the capacity, opportunities, and resources for youth-led and youth serving organizations to advance climate action globally. Initiatives to be supported include scalable agroforestry and reforestation efforts such as One Trillion Trees, waste management, conservation, and recycling programs, and new green job initiatives.
  • USAID will also advance internal climate justice reforms and implementation of USAID’s Diversity Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) Strategy, which includes a goal to continue increasing diversity of climate staff in USAID and its partners and assessing how climate change affects marginalized populations, including LGBTQI+ people.
  • USAID plans to provide funds to strengthen the governance of Indigenous Peoples and local communities over lands, including through the $13 million Indigenous People’s Alliance for Rights and Development partnership with the Forest Stewardship Council.
  • USAID’s Disability Program Fund plans to support persons with disabilities and their representative organizations in responding to climate change, bolstering their resilience to the effects of climate change, and situating them to contribute to climate change response as positive agents of change and sources of solutions.

USAID’s ongoing and forthcoming equity and climate justice initiatives will advance the vision and goals of the Agency’s forthcoming 2022-2030 Climate Strategy.

November 8, 2021

USAID Announces New Targets to Support the Global Climate Ambition Initiative

USAID announced ambitious new targets to support implementation of the Global Climate Ambition Initiative, which the White House launched at the Leaders’ Summit on Climate in April. The Global Climate Ambition Initiative seeks to coordinate U.S. government support to partner countries to strengthen and implement their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and National Adaptation Plans (NAPs) under the Paris Agreement, and advance towards net-zero and newer enhanced commitments.

USAID’s new Agency-wide climate strategy aims to align development and humanitarian assistance programs with NDCs, NAPs, and partner country climate policy priorities in at least 80 countries by 2030. In addition, USAID plans to support at least 40 partner countries in demonstrating significant and sustained progress towards achieving ambitious country commitments in that time.

Select new activities include:

  • USAID and the State Department are answering the call to support partner countries around the world in their efforts to develop, implement, and finance their adaptation priorities, as communicated in their NDCs, NAPs, and other adaptation planning documents.
  • USAID plans to provide support to the African Union Commission, African countries, and additional high-risk countries to strengthen their capacity to implement strong NAPs and NDCs.
  • A new Southeast Asia Smart Power Program, which will accelerate a clean energy transition and support the renewable energy goals of ASEAN member states.
  • Supporting countries’ implementation of commitments aligned with the World Health Organization-led Initiatives to Build Resilient and Sustainable Health Systems and implementation of Health National Adaptation Plans.

USAID and PREPARE

As part of USAID’s contribution and leadership in PREPARE, USAID re-affirmed the U.S. government target to support more than half a billion people in developing countries to adapt to and manage the impacts of climate change through locally-led development by 2030.

Through PREPARE, USAID aims to:

  • Mobilize $1 billion of public and private finance for climate-resilient water and sanitation services by 2030.
  • Launch the Green Recovery Investment Platform, which will invest up to $250 million to mobilize $2.5 billion of private finance for adaptation and mitigation by 2027 by creating incentives and reducing risks for large-scale private investment to address the climate finance gap.
  • Invest a target of $100 million over five years, leveraged by an equal or greater amount from private sector partners, in the sustainable conservation of forests and the well-being, prosperity, and resilience of local communities.
  • With the State Department, USAID will contribute $21.8 million to disaster risk financing in Africa so that African countries can access and layer disaster risk financing, including insurance coverage, needed to successfully manage increasingly frequent and intense climate-related extreme weather events.
  • With the State Department, USAID intends to support vulnerable countries around the world in their efforts to develop, implement, and finance their adaptation priorities, as communicated in their NAPs, NDCs, and other adaptation planning documents.
  • Bolster climate adaptation and resilience in Central America by expanding critical climate information and services to the region through the SERVIR program, a partnership of USAID, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and leading geospatial organizations around the world.
  • Under the Climate and Weather Ready Nations program, USAID and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration plan to train local climate forecasters, and leaders to predict climate hazards and impacts, strengthen hydrometeorological early warning systems to save lives, and expand climate observations through 3-D printed automated weather stations around the world.
  • In coordination with other U.S. government agencies and partners, USAID will support partner countries in achieving their commitments made in alignment with the World Health Organization’s Initiatives on Climate Resilient Health Systems and Sustainable, Low Carbon Health Systems.
  • The U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative as part of its new Strategy, End Malaria Faster, will work with partner countries to adapt programs to changing conditions such as the timing of insecticide spraying campaigns in response to shifting rainfall patterns.

View the fact sheet on USAID’s PREPARE targets.

USAID Announces Target to Mobilize $150 Billion in Climate Finance

USAID announced an ambitious target to mobilize $150 billion in public and private climate finance by 2030. USAID will catalyze the majority of this funding from private sector investments—as well as from public sector investments from partner country governments—through targeted programs and partnerships. USAID aims to catalyze ten dollars of private sector financing for every one dollar of USAID public funding invested. The U.S. government public funds that USAID invests in these programs and partnerships to catalyze outside investments will be drawn from and aligned with the anticipated $11.4 billion in annual public climate financing announced by President Biden at the UN General Assembly.

This target will be achieved through a series of new and forthcoming partnerships and programs, including:

  • USAID will work with partner governments in Colombia, Philippines, South Africa, Vietnam, Indonesia, and India, among others, to mobilize billions of dollars in private finance for renewable energy;
  • Launching the Green Recovery Investment Platform, which will invest up to $250 million to mobilize $2.5 billion of private finance for adaptation and mitigation by 2027 by creating incentives and reducing risks for large-scale private investment to address the climate finance gap;
  • Partnering with the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation to support mitigation and adaptation initiatives, including a loan guarantee on a portfolio of $25 million in loans through the Livelihoods Carbon Fund for carbon credits; and
  • Mobilizing public and private finance to transform the agriculture, health, water, and other key sectors to achieve lower emissions and increased resilience.

USAID will also align ongoing and future climate finance efforts with the Agency’s forthcoming 2022-2030 Climate Strategy in support of this goal.

Date 
Monday, November 8, 2021 - 8:45pm

Last updated: April 21, 2022