News Updates

News from the Chair

I am pleased to announce two new publications that STAP has presented to the 51st Meeting of Council - Governance Challenges, Gaps and Management Opportunities in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ) and Monitoring and Evaluation of Climate Change Adaptation. We hope the culmination of these... Read More

Advice to the GEF

The STAP Panel provides advice to the GEF on strategies, policies and projects. During each replenishment phase, STAP analyzes the environmental priorities for the GEF which involves identifying key themes for GEF investments to protect & enhance the global environment while contributing to sustainable development...Read More

Recent Publications

  • Black carbon causes millions of deaths every year as well as contributes to the warming of the planet. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that indoor smoke from burning coal or wood is among the top ten major health risk factors globally, contributing to over 4 million people dying prematurely from illness attributable to the household air pollution each year. Women and children are particularly at risk. Black carbon emissions arise mainly from the combustion of diesel fuel and biofuels, coal-fired power stations, biomass cook stoves, brick kilns and vegetation burning in open fields. There is increasing recognition of the importance of reducing emissions of black carbon and other short-lived climate...

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  • The concepts of resilience, adaptation and transformation are gaining prominence and being translated into aspirational goals that guide policy development. Understanding resilience, adaptation and transformation is critical to meeting the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly those related to climate change adaptation, food security, and safeguarding ecosystem functions. Devising interventions to progress resilience goals requires methods to evaluate resilience, and identify needs with respect to adaptation and transformation. Monitoring progress toward these goals requires identification of relevant indicators. The Resilience, Adaptation Pathways and Transformation Assessment (RAPTA) was commissioned by STAP to address these needs. The RAPTA ...

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  •  This report identifies and evaluates necessary conditions for the GEF's support of biofuel projects, and provides recommendations to the GEF Partnership. It outlines a strategic framework for supporting the supply of sustainable biofuels at scales that are significant to the global climate. It reconciles energy and food security challenges with local developmental needs and aspirations. Finally, it evaluates the growing controversy surrounding the sustainable production of biofuels and land-use competition. Overall, the GEF could help reduce the risks and costs for biofuel production, promote a faster transition to commercial viability, develop the market and regulatory conditions for promoting sustainable biofuel technologies and enable the positive development of biofuels as a...

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  • This review provides an updated, structured assessment of the impacts of climate change on GEF projects. In particular, the review focuses on the impact of climate change on ecosystems and species and its implications on GEF-6 strategy focal areas of biodiversity, land degradation, international waters and sustainable forest management. The review is intended primarily for the GEF Partnership and particularly the GEF Secretariat. The report is based on the outcomes of  GEF-STAP workshop on the topic held in January 2014 and builds on pre-existing GEF work on the issue. The analysis framework considered the climate change impacts on each of the four GEF focal areas in relation to a range of factors that are likely to be impacted by climate change: (A) physical/chemical...

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  • The trends towards urbanization, and the opportunities for introducing sustainability into the process, are complex technically, sociologically and financially. From a technical standpoint, understanding long term, multidisciplinary impacts of improper or delayed action requires uncommon knowledge and experience in all of the technical areas germane to cities. Sociologically, people do not, as a general rule, embrace complexity in today’s world, nor do they accept being forced to change. Instead, they need an agent to reduce any complexity (or perceived complexity) to simple, acceptable steps. Finally, the financial aspect to sustainable urbanization is exceedingly complicated. What financial instruments and strategies render optimal results? What sources of funding...

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  • The Fifth GEF Assembly comes at a critical but exciting juncture of the Facility. In two decades, the GEF partnership has made demonstrable contributions to delivering global environmental benefits (GEBs) in accord with its mandate as the financial mechanism for the Rio Conventions. Yet threats to the global commons continue to grow – driven by human activities and lifestyle choices – resulting in pollution, biodiversity loss, degradation of land and water, fragmentation of ecosystems, and climate change. Responses to manage common pool resources and improve governance have tended to be fragmentary, partial, and only limited in success. STAP believes that the linkages with sustainable development have to be central in GEF approaches to the generation of GEBs. It is insufficient...

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  • Establishing protected areas (PAs) has been one of the most common and successful interventions since the very beginning of the conservation movement. The process of protecting areas from threats posed by human activities will, by definition, inhibit some of these activities and therefore potentially have adverse impacts on the well-being of people living in or near PAs. However, these impacts could be balanced through the maintenance of valuable ecosystem services or the introduction of new livelihood options. Consequently, there is an on-going debate about whether the net impact of PAs on human well-being at local or regional scales is positive or negative. This STAP Advisory Document and associated Policy Brief Assessing the Effects of Terrestrial...

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  • The challenges confronting the conservation of the planet’s richness of life threaten to overwhelm our collective efforts to limit species loss and degradation of ecosystems and the services that they deliver. The foundation of biodiversity conservation for well over a century have been protected areas (PAs). While successful, they are increasingly vulnerable to land use changes taking place around them.  In response to these trends, conservationists and international organizations have developed and actively supported a new biodiversity conservation paradigm: biodiversity mainstreaming. It is the process of embedding biodiversity considerations into policies, strategies and practices of key public and private actors to promote conservation and sustainable use...

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  • Most freshwater and marine systems are transboundary in nature and therefore depend on sound regionalism and regional governance. The way these transboundary water systems are governed and managed is of vital importance for economic and social development, food security, biodiversity conservation, and the sustainable use and maintenance of ecosystem services. Yet there is little systematic knowledge about how transboundary water management systems are affected by regionalism and regional organizations. This STAP Publication on The Political Economy of Regionalism provides the context and analytical tools needed to understand contemporary regionalism and regional organizations from a global and political economy perspective. It reports on...

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  • The natural environment is a dynamic, integrated system of processes which fuse together to create the basis of life on the planet. Soil is one of the most vital and necessary components of this system – particularly through its interactions in climate change processes, water management and terrestrial ecosystems. The STAP Publication on Managing Soil Organic Carbon for Global Benefits presents a well grounded overview of the current technical and scientific knowledge of soil organic carbon. It highlights how soil organic management should be an important component of future strategy for the Global Environment Facility and for sustainable development, both as an effective method of climate change mitigation and as a crucial component in addressing global food security...

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