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Speeches & Transcripts September 6, 2021

Remarks by Mari Pangestu, World Bank Managing Director for Development Policy and Partnerships, at the "One Planet Summit delivers for biodiversity" side event at the IUCN World Conservation Congress

Minister Pompili and State Secretary Abba, thank you for welcoming us today at this very important gathering. I am pleased to join you both, esteemed colleagues from the United Nations, and all participants to discuss progress made through the One Planet Summit in support of the environment and the livelihoods depending on it.

Since it was launched in 2017 by the President of France, the President of the World Bank Group, and the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the One Planet Summit has been a key platform for raising ambition and mobilizing multi-stakeholder action on climate and biodiversity. Climate change and biodiversity loss are critical development challenges, and the urgency of action has never been clearer. The One Planet Summit brought together key partners at the right time and has consistently pushed the world to be more ambitious.

At the One Planet Summit in Paris in 2017, the World Bank Group announced ramped up support to countries to take strong climate action. This included our own commitment to stop financing upstream oil and gas. Since then, we have gone even further. Today the Bank Group is the biggest multilateral funder of climate investments in developing countries and provides two thirds of all multilateral finance for climate adaptation. Under our new five-year Climate Change Action Plan, announced in June, the World Bank Group will align all our financing with the goals of the Paris Agreement. We’re explicit in wanting this financing to maximize results. The CCAP signals our ramped-up effort to move from investing in “green” projects to helping countries fully integrate their climate and development goals. And we are backing that up with more finance – over the next five years, 35% of all our financing, on average, will go towards climate action.

In 2018, at the One Planet Summit in New York, we announced $1 billion to accelerate investments in battery storage for energy systems in developing and middle-income countries. Since then, projects have been approved supporting 3.9 gigawatt hours of battery storage across Africa and Asia.

And earlier this year, President Malpass announced our scaled-up support to the countries of the Sahel that are part of the Great Green Wall, an initiative to build resilient landscapes and livelihoods across that region and beyond. Over the next four years, we will be investing in the Sahel region $5.6 billion in 61 projects in climate-smart agriculture, environment, water, resilient infrastructure, energy access, renewable energy, financial inclusion, and jobs. We are making good progress, and our investments will help transform livelihoods across the Sahel, where over 27 million people are likely to become climate migrants by 2050 if we don’t do anything.

In addition, we are seeing progress in the effort to reduce deforestation through our Forest Carbon Partnership Facility. After a decade of hard work preparing for results-based finance that would benefit the poorest and incentivize governments to protect forests, finance has started flowing. Some 14 countries have signed agreements unlocking up to $670 million to forest protection, and we’ve just made the first payment to Mozambique. This illustrates that concerted and sustained efforts by partners with a common goal can achieve results.

The World Bank Group is proud to have been a partner of the One Planet Summit since the beginning. This partnership has helped to bring in key players to support climate and biodiversity goals.

While we take stock of our collective achievements, we also recognize that the work is far from over. We have seen the value of global partnership through the One Planet Summit. Now it will be critical for all partners here, together with civil society and the private sector, to continue to develop strategies for low-carbon and climate-resilient development, to ensure recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic is greener, more resilient, and more inclusive. We welcome the adoption of new and more ambitious targets for biodiversity through the upcoming Convention on Biological Diversity COP negotiations. At the World Bank Group, we consider biodiversity is key to a resilient recovery and stand ready to support countries as they invest in nature. I thank you.