Page 59 - Respond 2018 Magazine
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            Naoko Ishii, chief executive
            officer and chairperson, Global
            Environment Facility
                                We are switching our focus to address

                          the underlying drivers of environmental

                    degradation – rather than merely its effects

          long term strategy, which we are now implementing. We   biodiversity loss. This in turn will meet the goals of multiple
          are switching the focus of our operations to address the   conventions and deliver more global environmental benefits,
          underlying negative drivers of environmental degradation   with greater impacts.
          – rather than merely its effects – and to support innovative
          and scalable activities that cost-effectively deliver the   We all want to live on a healthy planet, and enjoy the
          highest impacts.                                     beauty of nature. The world is responding to the threats
                                                               we face, but not fast enough. With the Sustainable
          We have a golden opportunity ahead of us. We are     Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement,
          currently in the middle of discussions on the seventh   the world’s nations have provided momentum and
          replenishment of the Facility’s Trust Fund. Participants will   direction that must be seized. And multi-stakeholder
          assess what works and what does not, and what strategy   sustainability platforms have proliferated, reflecting a
          we should embrace at this critical moment. It’s a chance to   growing recognition from business of both the risks and
          raise our own ambition.                              the economic opportunities that exist.

          The emerging overall programming architecture of the   But, important as this all is, it is only a start. Much more is
          Trust Fund is aimed at advancing the 2020 vision by   needed, and it must happen fast: we are at a tipping point,
          addressing the drivers of environmental degradation and   for good or ill, for the world’s environment and prosperity.
          contributing to systems change in key areas that impact
          our mission.                                         The replenishment of the Trust Fund should be more about
                                                               looking forward than back. And, grave though the current
          It is increasingly evident that it is simply not possible to   threats may be, future development in harmony with the
          address a particular environmental issue in isolation, as if it   planet is within our grasp.
          inhabited its own silo. Instead we need to address complex
          challenges in an integrated manner.                  We need to act swiftly, and at scale, to realize it – and that is
                                                               just what the Facility intends to do.
          Some of the Facility’s recent activities have provided clear
          evidence of the need to go deeper into the fundamental
          causes of environmental degradation. If we are to protect
          biodiversity, for instance, we should invest not only in   This article was originally published in the
          protected areas but also make integrated investments in   UN Environment “Our Planet” magazine in
          reforming land use and food systems, the major drivers of   September 2017

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