FINANCE037countries establish solid market conditions to nurturelow-carbon technologies. These include helping togrow solar power in North Africa, demonstrating hi-tech fuel cell buses in China and Brazil, and deployingwind turbines in Mexico. The GEF also helps countriesspeed market transformation, such as waste-heatrecovery projects in China and Eastern Europe andbuilding standards in Egypt.The GEF plays a special role in the demonstration,deployment and transfer of innovative low-carbontechnologies. The Conference of the Parties approvedthe Poznan Strategic Programme on technologytransfer that included both support to priority pilotprojects and assistance to 35 to 45 developingcountries in developing their Technology NeedsAssessments. In addition, the Conference of theParties specifically requested the GEF to consider thelong term implementation of the Poznan StrategicProgramme on technology transfer: hence technologytransfer is a critical part of the GEF new funding cycle.SUSTAINABLE FOREST MANAGEMENTAND REDD+The big environmental challenges of our time, whetherit is climate change, biodiversity, land degradation ordepletion of marine resources, are at the heart of ourmission. It takes a synergistic approach betweenenvironmental sectors to multiply positive side effectsand the GEF has been doing this throughout its history.Sustainable Forest Management is one of the key areaswhere the GEF intervention is pivotal to deliver multipleenvironmental benefits. Throughout its history, the GEFhas invested more than US$1.5 billion in forests,complemented by more than $4.5 billion in additionalfinancing: this makes us today the largest financer offorest among multilateral financial institutions. Forests play a critical role in climate change mitigationof land-based emissions. They also harbour asignificant portion of the world's biodiversity wealth andare responsible for the provision of key ecosystemservices, including as buffers against soil degradationand desertification, as well as sustaining the livelihoodsof millions of rural people everywhere. Through suchsynergistic approaches, if the GEF invests one dollar inbiodiversity of forests, the same dollar is simultaneouslyinvested in carbon retention. Like that, with one dollarwe create a two dollar intervention. In this time of limited budgets, this is an importantcomparative advantage and which is at the core of theGEF mandate as the financial mechanism of severalinternational environmental conventions. ADAPTATIONClimate change adaptation has become a global?
imperative and the GEF historically has and willcontinue to play a key role in assisting countries makestrategic choices that address climate concerns. At therequest of the Parties to the UNFCCC, the GEFmanages the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF)and the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) -both funds recognise that in the world's poorestcountries adaptation is a matter of life or death.Integrating adaptation into existing developmentprogrammes is essential to make future growth moreresilient. For example, in China, an SCCF grant ismainstreaming climate change resilience into a majorinvestment for the agriculture sector in the"breadbasket of China". In the Andes region, anotherSCCF project is helping countries deal with the impactof melting glaciers on local and national water supply.Investing in adaptation also means we need to pursuefinance path-breaking strategies: for example, in thehealth sector, we hope to make investments in vector-038FINANCEAbove: Local villagersand engineers inBhutan's Lunana regionare working to preventclimate-inspired glaciallake flooding throughGEF adaptation projects