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Global Resilience 2024

Climate finance partnership through FAST builds global resilience

©FAO/Sebastian Liste

Kaveh Zahedi

Director of the Office of Climate Change, Biodiversity and Environment, FAO

Climate finance and building the resilience of vulnerable communities worldwide are essential. Sustainable farming offers these solutions, but adequate investment is crucial to transform decades-old practices.

The world experienced record temperatures in 2023, coupled with extreme weather events in greater numbers and intensity than ever before. Heatwaves and wildfires, droughts and flooding rains worsened food and water shortages and environmental degradation in many countries. The number of acutely food-insecure people rose to 333 million, more than double the number before the Covid-19 pandemic. 

FAST addresses climate finance gaps

Agrifood systems attract only 4.3% of total climate finance.1 Support from climate-related finance plummeted to USD19 billion in 2021 — a 12% decrease from 2020. Vulnerable communities including women, youth, family farmers and Indigenous Peoples rarely benefit. 

The Food and Agriculture for Sustainable Transformation (FAST) Partnership launched in 2022. It has been set up to overcome gaps in the quality and quantity of climate finance for agrifood systems. It is supported by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture of Germany (BMEL) and facilitated by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

It brings together governments, intergovernmental organizations, civil society organizations, women, youth and farmers’ organisations, multilateral development banks and global and regional networks.

The FAST Partnership is designed to
build on ongoing global and regional
initiatives and coalitions.

Facilitating climate initiatives and coalitions

The Partnership has set up three working groups, focused on boosting national capacity to identify and access climate finance, supporting knowledge and capacity development and ensuring agrifood systems are fully embedded in climate change policies. They have begun activities, including mapping climate finance opportunities, establishing mechanisms for peer-to-peer learning and a helpdesk assisting farmers to access funding.

The FAST Partnership is designed to build on ongoing global and regional initiatives and coalitions, driving action by connecting and accelerating them. Born as a COP27 Initiative, developed by the COP28 UAE Presidency as a Partnership, it is expected to play an important role in COP29 in Azerbaijan, when countries will negotiate a new climate finance goal based on the needs of developing countries.

Partnerships boost climate finance access

Beyond the FAST Partnership, FAO helps facilitate access to climate finance and build resilience through other means as well. Among these, the Organization’s partnership with the Global Environment Facility (GEF) has helped more than 120 countries access over $1.7 billion in financing and leverage over $11 billion in co-financing to transform agrifood systems. FAO’s partnership with the Green Climate Fund (GCF) has raised over USD 1 billion for transformative projects in 20 countries across five regions.


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