Funding climate protection

The Board of the Green Climate Fund.
As member of the Green Climate Fund, Switzerland works to ensure that the needs of those most affected by climate change are given consideration. © UNFCCC

Global warming disrupts economic development and threatens to destroy the progress that has been made in reducing poverty. That is why Switzerland incorporates climate protection and the global impact of climate change in its international development policy, and provides expertise, technical solutions and financial resources for climate protection as part of its development projects and via international funding mechanisms.

The SDC's focus

People in developing countries are particularly affected by climate change because their livelihoods depend directly on natural resources. Such countries often lack the financial and technical capacities that are required for climate change adaptation. Climate change impairs both economic and social development globally and compromises what has already been achieved.

Synergies with poverty reduction

Switzerland is active in climate change mitigation and adaptation internationally and aims for its funding for developing countries to be deployed effectively. It takes into account the challenges its partner countries face and anchors its own measures in a long-term strategy to reduce poverty worldwide. To this end, the SDC creates synergies between climate protection and improving food security or governance, for example, to ensure that Switzerland's official development assistance is used in an optimal way.

International financing mechanisms

Switzerland is represented in the steering committees of the most important climate and environment funds, where the SDC advocates in particular for giving adequate attention to the needs of the poorest countries. To do this, the SDC relies on its long-standing experience in its partner countries. It makes sure that policies, procedures and the funding earmarked for climate protection are used to help the weakest people, communities and regions over the long term.

As part of this goal, the SDC was actively involved in creating the Green Climate Fund (GCF). The GCF is aimed at financing eco-friendly measures in developing countries in order to increase sustainable development. Today it is a central component of the international financing for climate protection. Through its representation in the GCF's steering committee, the SDC works actively to ensure greater multilateral cooperation and to promote innovative approaches.

The SDC, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) make contributions to international financing mechanisms for climate change mitigation and adaptation. In the 2015–17 period, Switzerland made its first contribution of USD 100 million to the GCF.

Context

Switzerland works to ensure that the existing approaches to combating climate change are deployed where they can have the largest impact. It aims to ensure that the needs of the people most affected by climate change are taken into account in particular, and that the adaptation measures that are needed receive sufficient funding. The SDC undertakes this work as part of its mandate under the Federal Act on International Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid. The international cooperation dispatches set out the priorities for each period. For Switzerland's international cooperation strategy 2021-2024, climate change – a growing challenge for development policy – is a key focus.

Increasing awareness at the international level

Because measures to adapt to climate change and a transition to sustainable development are needed, industrial countries – including Switzerland – are making commitments at the international level. Sustainable Development Goal 13 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development underlines the importance of combating climate change and its effects. Under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the international community has committed itself to mobilising public and private funds for this. Switzerland has a high degree of credibility in this area because of its careful and sustainable approach to its environment (e.g. recycling, building standards, private sector collaborations) and its highly industrialised economy at the same time. This allows Switzerland to position itself proactively in international discussions and find an audience for its concerns.

Current projects

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Building Damage Assessment in Albania

01.04.2024 - 31.12.2027

The devastating earthquake in 2019 revealed that Albania has a weak policy and institutional framework and low public awareness on building damage assessment. The Swiss project will support Albania in strengthening its disaster risk management institutions at national and municipal level to provide sustainable and effective building damage assessment services, leading to safer living conditions and a more disaster resilient business environment.


8th Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction, Geneva, June 2025

01.03.2024 - 31.12.2025

The Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction is the most important international conference to discuss progress in the implementation of the Sendai Framework for DRR. The eighth session of the Global Platform will be hosted by Switzerland in Geneva in June 2025. It will review advances in the realisation of the calls to action made in 2023 by the United Nations General Assembly on the midterm review of the Sendai Framework and will be key for the identification and support of measures to accelerate DRR implementation and improve coherence with the Agenda 2030 and the Paris Agreement.


Addressing Climate and El Niño-related Risks in Southeast Asia

01.02.2024 - 31.07.2025

Through an innovative partnership with the Asian Disaster Preparedness Centre (ADPC) and Geoneon, the SDC will support the creation of high-quality geospatial data products to support riskinformed and climate-smart decision-making in development cooperation and DRM in priority subnational areas in Lao PDR and Indonesia, contributing to and complementing efforts under the SERVIR Southeast Asia project implemented by ADPC and supported by USAID and NASA.


Climate & Socially Resilient Livelihoods’ Support (CSRLS)

01.02.2024 - 30.04.2028

The climatic challenges exacerbate Afghanistan's already fragile socio-economic condition. The project by the Afghan NGO, The Liaison Office, aims to sustainably improve lives and livelihoods of the poorest households in selected provinces by strengthening the natural resource base, climate change resilient and diversified livelihoods, relationships within and between communities, as well as joint climate action.


Green Climate Fund Core Contribution 2024-2027

01.01.2024 - 31.12.2027

Designed as an operating entity of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)’s financial mechanism, the Green Climate Fund (GCF) is the largest multilateral climate fund financing exclusively climate mitigation and adaptation projects in developing countries. Switzerland advocates in the GCF governing board for high impact climate projects with maximum development cobenefits, social inclusion and conflict-sensitivity.  


EmPower II: Women for Climate Resilient Societies

01.12.2023 - 31.12.2025

With EmPower II, SDC contributes to a SIDA-funded project of UN-Women and UNEP promoting  climate-resilient development for women and other marginalized groups. SDC’s support enables disaggregated data products for gender-responsive DRR and climate strategies and enhances capacities on the subnational level among policy-makers and CSOs. SDC’s support also facilitates financial access and literacy on renewable energy in Cambodia, Bangladesh and Indonesia.


Climate Resilience Develoipment in Tajikistan

15.11.2023 - 13.11.2027

The  contribution  to  the HELVETAS project  aims  at building  resilience  of  livelihoods  of  the  rural communities  of  Khatlon  region,  vulnerable  to  climate  change.  The  population  and  particularly women  and  youth  will  engage  in  management,  regeneration  and  protection  of  their  natural resources and biodiversity while implementing disaster risk reduction measures. 


JP DRR for Sustain. Develop. in BiH

01.10.2023 - 30.11.2027

The authorities at all administrative levels will be supported to transform from reactive to proactive multi-sectoral disaster risk management and develop country-wide harmonized frameworks. Disaster risk reduction platforms will be set at all government levels to ensure better understanding of disaster risks and coordination of priority investments to increase resilience of vulnerable communities with a special focus on excluded population groups. 


Humanitarian assistance to people affected by the protracted crisis in Venezuela

01.09.2023 - 31.12.2024

Despite a moderate recovery in some economic indicators during 2022, the Venezuelan economy continues to contract during 2023. Meanwhile, there is no improvement in the structural causes of the humanitarian crisis. As a result, the needs of the most vulnerable are still high. Therefore, Caritas aims to facilitate access on health, nutrition, food security and livelihoods, for vulnerable families in eight states according to the Guidance Note for Venezuela 2022-2024. 


Mozambique Humanitarian Aid UNICEF WASH Preparedness 2023

01.09.2023 - 31.05.2024

Through UNICEF country program support, Switzerland contributes to integrated climate resilience, disaster risk reduction and preparedness in the WASH sector for communities at risk of cyclonic events. The program focuses on communities facing the triple risk of lacking access to WASH while being exposed to climate-related and health-related hazards. In addition, UNICEF program will respond to specific gaps in the emergency response at national and sub-national levels and prepare the WASH sector for a joint and systematic approach to climate change. 


Peru, SEDAPAL: Emergency Water Supply in Lima

01.08.2023 - 31.12.2027

Lima with a population of over 12 million is subject to the highest seismic vulnerability in Peru. Hence, ensuring Lima’s water supply continuity in case of a major earthquake is crucial. The initiative aims at contributing to strengthened preparedness capacities of Lima’s water service provider (SEDAPAL) by improving its technical, financial and logistical capacities, knowledge exchange and inter-sectorial coordination together with key partners from government, academia, and the private sector.


Bangladesh Microinsurance Market Development Programme

01.07.2023 - 31.12.2027

This programme takes forward Switzerland’s global and in-country experience in working on agricultural microinsurance by addressing critical climate risks, hazards and resulting economic shocks for farming people. The programme will sustainably increase resilience of farmers and related micro and small enterprises through climate change adaptation practices, and stimulate sustainable and inclusive growth across multiple agricultural sub-sectors.

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