For more than 30 years, UNEP has played a leading role in developing and advancing the international agenda on biodiversity: catalysing awareness on global environmental problems, building consensus on action to address those problems, and promoting and supporting conservation programmes of a catalytic nature. Foremost among these efforts has been the strengthening of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to which UNEP provides the Secretariat and for which the Global Environment Facility (GEF) acts as the project financing body.

The UNEP GEF portfolio of biodiversity projects is active in four main areas of intervention consistent with UNEP's mandate in the GEF:

  1. Strengthening the enabling environment so that countries can more effectively implement commitments made as Parties to the CBD;
  2. Environmental information management, environmental assessments, environmental sustainability,environmental conservation,environment pollution ,analysis and research;

  3. Identification and development of tools and methodologies for conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity;
  4. Transboundary conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity


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UNEP and GEF Biodiversity Project highlights

Andean Páramo Project "or" PPA

The project "Conservation of Biodiversity in the Moors of North and Central Andes, is a regional initiative that works to conserve and sustainable use of grasslands in Venezuela , Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

Food for the Future: Conserving Crop Wild Relatives

As the name suggests, a crop wild relative (CWR) is a wild plant species related to a domesticated crop. For centuries crop wild relatives have provided farmers with the genetic material to improve the nutritional quality of crops, enhance productivity, and provide cultivated varieties with resistance to pests and diseases.

Managing Water Wisely to Save Wetlands and Waterbirds

Human civilizations have risen by the shores of seas, rivers, and wetlands, the latter being remarkably productive ecosystems, teeming with biodiversity such as waterbirds and fish. Yet, where water has been abused and lost, wildlife and civilizations too have vanished. Now, more than ever, as human population increases and water demands grow, people and wildlife need secure and adequate sources of water for survival.

Mitigating the Threats of Invasive Alien Species in the Insular Caribbean (MTIASIC)

The Project is funded by the Global Fund for the Environment (GEF) with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) as the lead implementing agency and the Centre for Agriculture and Bio-Sciences International (CABI) as the lead executing agency; and Caribbean Invasive Species Working Group (CISWIG) are some of the main groups actively tackling the issue of IAS in the Caribbean. 

Conservation and Sustainable Use of Biodiversity through Sound Tourism Development in Biosphere Reserves in Central and Eastern Europe.

The GEF Supported project will strengthen protection of globally significant mountain ecosystems in selected Biosphere Reserves of Central and Eastern Europe. This will be achieved through the development of new and innovative management systems with a special focus on tourism-related uses of these sites. Concurrently, awareness raising and capacity building systems will be developed and implemented, to ensure long term sustainable impacts. Tourism model initiatives and activities will be initiated to ensure distribution of returns for conservation purposes as well as to local stakeholders. 

Enhancing Conservation of the Critical Network of Sites of Wetlands Required by Migratory Waterbirds on the African/Eurasian Flyways.

The WOW project is funded by The Global Environment Facility (GEF), the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, the African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbird Agreement (AEWA) and a wide range of other donors.The project's goal is to strengthen capacity to plan and manage the conservation of migratory waterbirds and the critical sites along their flyways.Showcase projects under way in twelve countries (Estonia, Gambia, Hungary, Lithuania, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Turkey and Yemen) are providing lessons learned and leading practices.


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