Mr. Balisi Gopolang from the Department of Meteorological Services presenting on Botswana Change Promise

Gaborone, 2 March 2020- This morning the UNDP-Botswana through Global Environment Fund (GEF)/ Small Grand Programme held an information sharing meeting with Civil Society Organisations, Academic and Research Institutions- Botswana on preparation of project proposals for climate change mitigation and adaptation. The UNDP has issued a Call for Standard Project Proposals and interested parties are expected to respond by the 9th of March 2020.

When giving opening remarks on behalf of the UNDP-Botswana Resident Representative Mrs Chimbidzani Bratonozic, Programme Specialist-Environment and Climate Change said that through the technical and financial support provided by the Programme, local communities have developed and led initiatives that have significantly contributed to the restoration and conservation of the natural environment as well as enhanced people's well-being and livelihoods particularly in the rural areas. She added that the programme supports Government priorities and actions in environmental conservation as well as driving the sustainable development agenda through supporting community led pilot projects with the potential for up-scaling and replication by the Government and other partners.

Bratonozic advised the potential grantees that the programme does not support individuals and companies (Private entities). She said the intended beneficiaries of the programme are non-profit oriented organisations and the Academic and Research Institutions established by an Act of Parliament. The attendants were also advised that support is granted upon receiving a project proposal that falls within the GEF focal areas of; Biodiversity, Climate Change, Land Degradation, Sustainable Forest Management, Persistent Organic Pollutants, Chemicals and Waste, International Waters.

The participants were also informed that in complementing government efforts particularly at the grassroot levels, UNDP through GEF/SGP is committed to intensify its support in addressing new and emerging environmental issues. It was noted that one of these emerging environmental issues, the country is currently facing is climate change. According Bratonozic climate change has become a real threat to mankind in this century globally and Botswana has not been spared.

When delivering a presentation on Botswana’s promise on climate change, Mr Balising Gopolang from Department of Meteorological Services noted that the government is committed to reduce contributions of the Green House Gases which are causing climate change and curbing the impacts climate change. He shared that this has been demonstrated through ratifying to the Multi-Lateral Environmental Agreements and providing and a conducive environment through policy formulations. He highlighted that as per obligations under the United Nations Framework on Climate Change, Botswana has formulated mitigation and adaptation measures aimed at cubing climate change. Moreover, under the convention and relevant instruments, opportunities are provided for in several articles such as; technology transfer and provision of Finance to developing countries among others.  

On her part the National Coordinator for Global Environment Facility Small Grants Programme, Abigail Lillian Engleton indicated that the GEF Small Grants Programme have reserved funds at a tune of USD300,000 from Operational Phase 6 (OP6) allocated resources to support community led initiatives through the on-going call for proposals (CfP) advertised. She said the CfP is aimed at supporting innovative proposals that contribute towards climate change mitigation and adaption focal area within the agriculture and energy sectors. Engleton explained that this is within the specific areas of climate smart innovative agro-ecology and low carbon energy access co-benefits. It is expected that the projects will be supported at a ceiling of USD50,000 per project.

On the proposed project sites, a total of 50% of the proposed projects are planned to be implemented within Operational Phase 6 landscape to support local communities within the boundaries of Makgadikgadi Framework Management Plan (in Boteti and part of Tutume (Nata, Gweta, Maposa, Zoroga, Tsokatshaa, Sepako, Manxotai, Dukwi, Mosetse, Kotamogoree, Lepashe and Matsitama villages) Sub Districts only). The other 50% of the proposed projects to be supported will be implemented outside the OP6 landscape (all the other areas in Botswana).

Engleton further advised that the proposed projects should contribute to efforts of the government in response to combatting climate change and achieving the country’s obligations and pledges as resonated in the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) report of 2015. She encouraged that the projects should be seen contributing towards the attainment of SGD Goal 13 on Climate Action.

In her closing remarks, Ms Chigedze Chinyepi; GEF/SGP Technical Advisory Group representative, encouraged potential grantees to effectively utilise the CfP package provided and draft their concepts in line with the proposal template provided as well as align the proposed initiatives with the Country Programme Strategy for Operational Phase 6. She also shared that she was grateful that majority of participants were the youths who are considered as one of the vulnerable groups for GEF/SGP. The youth as the "digital generation" were also challenged to research intensively and develop innovative proposals to be considered for possible funding by the GEF/SGP. Deadline for submission is 9th of March 2020.   --

Ms Chigedze Chinyepi, GEF/SGP Technical Advisory Group representative
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