[Islamabad, 17th July 2023]: The Green Climate Fund (GCF) has announced $66 million in funding to support 'Recharge Pakistan, a project to enhance Pakistan's resilience to climate change by improving water systems and investing in green infrastructure. Overall, this $77.8 million partnership is the largest-ever investment in an ecosystem-based approach to build Pakistan's climate resilience.
In addition to the GCF funding, the project is supported through a collective $12 million investment and technical support from The Coca‑Cola Foundation, The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and WWF-Pakistan. They all come together to prioritize climate change efforts by expanding large-scale green infrastructure, wetlands development, flood-plains management and local businesses in the agriculture and forestry.
The 7-year project is designed to serve communities along the Indus Basin and is unique in its use of nature-based solutions for preparedness against high-risk climate disasters that Pakistan is increasingly vulnerable to.
Saadia Madsbjerg, President of The Coca‑Cola Foundation, acknowledged the magnitude of the challenge, stating, "As we strive to address the far-reaching impacts of climate change in a populous nation like Pakistan, we must rely on collective creativity and a steadfast commitment. Recognizing that this is an inter-generational challenge, it is our duty to collaborate, invest our resources, and work tirelessly to create enduring solutions. With our funding for Recharge Pakistan, we aim to make a positive difference in the lives of over 7 million people and extend support to communities most susceptible to the threat of floods."
Recharge Pakistan is also among the largest grant contributions that The Coca‑Cola Foundation has made to date in climate resilience and disaster preparedness.
As an integrated program with several ministries have championed and co-designed Recharge Pakistan under Pakistan's existing EBA priorities. Pakistan's Minister of Climate Change, Sherry Rehman, in a supporting public statement said, Recharge is a product of, "Rigorous design implementation after months of consultation with all the provinces."
This announcement demonstrates successful efforts towards coalition-building. U.S Ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome said, “The U.S. government considers the Recharge Pakistan Project a game changer for flood mitigation and the creation of economic opportunities in areas faced with recurring water insecurity. Partnering with GCF, the Coca Cola Foundation, and World Wildlife Fund will help Pakistan tackle the negative impacts of climate change and align seamlessly with the U.S.-Pakistan Green Alliance framework".
The implementing partner WWF-Pakistan's Director General, Hammad Naqi Khan added, "A focus on green infrastructure and ecosystem-based adaptation is crucial, especially for a country like Pakistan, where the impacts of climate change are manifesting with increasing frequency and severity and deepening the economic crisis."