The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the designated authority of the United Nations system on environmental issues at the global and regional level. Its mandate is to coordinate the development of environmental policy consensus by keeping the global environment under review and bringing emerging issues to the attention of governments and the international community for current and future action.
UNEP’s mission is to provide leadership and encourage partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations.
Supporting low-carbon and climate-resilient development is at the core of UNEP’s climate change priorities; indeed, UNEP’s mandate charges it with assisting developing countries in the implementation of the environmental dimensions of sustainable development.
To this end, changing attitudes and helping to build awareness among financiers to consider climate-related and sustainable energy investments has been a focus for UNEP’s past finance activities and is now a key element of the work undertaken by the Centre.
The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) is a key partner for the Centre. The Ministry’s principal functions include climate policy issues, international cooperation in environmental policy, and informing and educating the public about environmental aspects. It acknowledges that climate change is a great global challenge which has to be overcome.
Climate protection and energy, and the related national and international level policy frameworks, have become key topics in the Ministry’s work. Germany is a driving force behind the international climate negotiation process. It is leading the way with ambitious emission reduction targets at the national level: it will reduce its emissions by 40% by 2020 as compared with 1990, irrespective of the efforts undertaken by other countries. This makes sense for economic as well as climate policy reasons. Further, Germany tries to set high standards within this international negotiation process regarding mitigation targets and providing reliable and transparent climate finance.
Since the beginning of 2008, BMU has made around €1.1 billion available (inter alia from the sale of emissions allowances) to finance a new initiative. The International Climate Initiative (ICI) consists of more than 350 international projects in the fields of mitigation, adaptation, REDD+ and biodiversity. The goal regarding mitigation to tap the high existing potential for reducing emissions in a cost-effective way and on a large scale and further to assist partner countries in switching to a sustainable, low-carbon economy.