By Julie Mandoyan | October 22, 2012 - 16:00 GMT
At the conclusion of last week’s (18-20 October) second meeting of the Green Climate Fund’s (GCF) Board, it was announced that South Korean city Songdo would be the location of the new body’s headquarters. Songdo was competing with five other cities for the right to host the organization. Expected to become operational in 2013, the GCF will support projects, programs, policies and other activities in developing countries that are party to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The stakes connected to the headquarters decision were high, as the GCF will administer an endowment that is expected to reach about $100 billion by 2020.
In a press release on Saturday, the Board announced it had “selected by consensus Songdo, Incheon City, Republic of Korea as the host city of the Green Climate Fund.” The 24-person steering committee, made up of representatives of both developed and developing countries, established the selection procedure during its first meeting in Geneva in August. The decision will be made official once it is endorsed by the 18th Conference of the Parties (COP18) to take place from 26 November—7 December 2012 in Doha, Qatar. In addition, the meeting in Songdo addressed the work plan and priorities of the Board until the end of 2013, although these were not made public.
The other candidate cities were Geneva (Switzerland), Bonn (Germany), Mexico City (Mexico), Warsaw (Poland) and Windhoek (Namibia). Liane Schalatek, Director of the American branch of the Heinrich Boell Foundation, had suggested to The Global Journal prior to the Board’s first meeting that the two contenders most likely to be chosen were Bonn and Geneva.
Indeed, until now, the GCF’s Interim Secretariat was based in Bonn, where the UNFCCC headquarters are located. Geneva was considered a favorite due to its status as an international green hub, with the presence of several actors involved in fighting the effects of climate change and working towards the transition to a green economy, including the UN Environment Programme, the World Meteorological Organization and the International Labor Organization.
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