Cumbersome GCF processes worry CSOs in Malawi

Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in the Climate Change and Environment sectors have expressed worry over the Green Climate Fund (GCF) accreditation process describing it as frustratingly rigorous, expensive and unnecessarily prohibitive for most local CSOs in the country.

The outcry was registered during a 1 stakeholder meeting on GCF processes in Malawi organized by Civil Society Organization on Climate Change (CISONECC) with support from CARE Germany and German Watch through Care Malawi.

The meeting was held at Linde Motel in Mponera on 3rd September 2021.

In an interview after the workshop, Leadership for Environment and Development - Southern and Eastern Africa (LEAD-SEA) Regional Director Professor Sosten Chiotha asked Malawi Government to support the CSOs through the accreditation process so that local CSOs are able to develop and submit project proposals to the GCF.

“The GCF presents a great opportunity for Malawi to mobilize resources for climate change adaptation and mitigation. However, access to the fund by local CSOs is almost impossible due to the Fund’s prohibitive processes and requirements. Government should deliberately support local CSOs in getting GCF accreditation to enable local CSOs to access the fund,” said Chiotha.

Chiotha: Support CSOs GCF Accreditation

He further suggested that government can utilize funds from carbon levy to strengthen the capacity of CSOs to access the Fund.

“It will be a small investment for sizable returns,” said Chiotha.

In a separate interview, CISONECC 1 Coordinator Julius Ng’oma said GCF is an important climate financing mechanism that Malawi should benefit from in the face of limited domestic financing for climate change management.

According to Ng’oma, having a local GCF Accredited Entity will enhance local CSOs access to the Fund thereby benefitting the country.

“We need to move away from relying on Inter1 Accredited Entities and empower our local CSOs to engage with the fund as Accredited Entities,” he said.

Ng'oma: The GCF is an opportunity for climate financing in Malawi

The GCF is a climate financing mechanism under The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) which was introduced in 2010 to support adaptation and mitigation efforts towards addressing impacts of climate change in developing countries. Since its establishment, GCF has financed 177 projects with about 8.8b USD. There is only one GCF-funded project being implemented in the country – the Scaling Up the Use of Modernized Climate Information and Early Warning Systems” (M-Climes) implemented by the United Nation Development Program (UNDP) and coordinated by the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DODMA).