In a groundbreaking move at the World Climate Action Summit, the COP28 Presidency and its partners unveiled a series of ambitious initiatives with an initial commitment of $1.7bn to simultaneously address climate and biodiversity goals. This landmark announcement signifies a pivotal shift towards recognizing nature as an indispensable ally in the fight against climate change.
Reaffirming the urgency of nature conservation, COP28 High-Level Champion Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak emphasized the crucial role of nature in climate action. “Ensuring that nature is recognized, supported, and funded as a prerequisite to climate action has been a priority for the COP28 Presidency,” she stated.
The summit witnessed the unveiling of national and regional investment plans and partnerships focused on nature-climate action, demonstrating a collective commitment to the Paris Agreement and the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework.
Unveiling Transformative Initiatives
- The United Arab Emirates (UAE) pledged $100m in new funding for nature-climate projects, with an initial $30m investment in Ghana’s ‘Resilient Ghana’ plan.
- The Bezos Earth Fund committed $100m to support the ‘Unlocking Blue Pacific Prosperity Plan,’ an initiative to protect 30% of the Pacific Small Island Developing States’ (P-SIDS) waters and exclusive economic zones by 2030.
- A group of philanthropies, including Bloomberg Philanthropies, Builders Vision, and Oceankind, announced $250m in new funding under the Ocean Resilience Climate Alliance (ORCA) to safeguard vulnerable marine areas, promote ocean-based mitigation efforts, and advance research on climate impacts.
- France, under the leadership of President Emmanuel Macron, pledged funding for three forest finance packages, including $100m for Papua New Guinea, $60m for the Democratic Republic of Congo, and $50m for the Republic of Congo.
- Indonesia and Norway announced a $100m partnership to support Indonesia’s pioneering FOLU Net Sink 2030 plan, which aims to achieve carbon neutrality in the land-use sector by 2030.
- The Asian Development Bank, along with other partners, established the Nature Finance Hub, a new initiative committing to mobilizing $1bn from development partners and aiming to attract an additional $2bn in private finance by 2030 for nature-focused climate projects.
Recognizing the Role of Indigenous Communities
The summit also underscored the pivotal role Indigenous communities play in conserving ecosystems. Indigenous Peoples, who represent just 5% of the global population, protect 80% of the world’s remaining biodiversity. Their knowledge and traditional practices will be central to the UAE-Brazil COP28-to-COP30 partnership.
These nature-climate plans represent a significant step forward in addressing the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. The collective commitment to nature-based solutions demonstrates the growing recognition that protecting and restoring ecosystems is not only essential for environmental health but also a critical component of climate action.
As the world prepares for COP28 Nature, Land Use, and Ocean Day on December 9th, the momentum for nature-based solutions continues to build. The summit will provide a further platform to showcase the transformative potential of nature in addressing climate change and safeguarding biodiversity.