Reducing deforestation and promoting greener finance: launch of new UK PACT projects

29 Nov 2023

The UK Partnering for Accelerated Climate Transitions (UK PACT) programme continues to support emission reduction efforts and green and resilient economic opportunities across Latin America.  

UK PACT supports low-carbon transitions across ODA-eligible countries. Since 2020, UK PACT has funded new ideas that address low-carbon challenges and gender equality and social inclusion.  

UK PACT’s Green Recovery Challenge Fund (GRCF) has funded 33 projects to date, across four key themes. The themes are key contributors to decarbonisation strategies – greening financial systems, electrifying urban mobility, nature-based solutions, and clean energy transition.

The GRCF is launching 14 new projects this year that raise climate ambition across Latin America and Asia. These projects will focus on low carbon challenges across two themes – greening financial systems and agriculture, forestry, and other land use (AFOLU) for forests, land use and agriculture.

Supporting Latin America’s green transition

Latin America has been experiencing the impacts of climate change with a major increase in droughts, extreme rainfall, marine heatwaves and glacier melts.[1] The region needs strategic public and private investment to protect its biodiversity and primary forests whilst supporting the decarbonisation required to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.[2]

To drive decarbonisation, countries in the region require finance, capacity building and institutional support. This will help to create and monitor new solutions that tackle climate change.

To address challenges in Latin America, UK PACT’s new projects build capacity and provide technical assistance on agriculture, forestry, and other land use (AFOLU) tools for forests, land use and agriculture in Brazil, Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru.

This is a priority for many countries across Latin America. AFOLU creates the potential to reduce emissions from land use and to create economic opportunities. The tools help governments to improve climate reporting and inform climate policy development. Projects that develop and use AFOLU tools can also support local communities. The AFOLU theme builds on projects under the nature-based solutions (NBS) funding theme and addresses the growing demand from COP26 commitments on forestry and agriculture.

UK PACT's role

The GRCF’s strong portfolio includes ‘greening financial systems’ projects in Brazil, Argentina and Peru, and ‘nature-based solutions’ projects in Brazil and Peru. The new projects under the AFOLU theme will build on their legacy.

One nature-based solutions project delivered in Brazil – a partnership between the Imperial College London, FarFarm, and the University of Brasilia, built capacity for agroforestry organic cotton (AOC) production. The project developed scalable business models for sustainable AOC supply chains. Its impact included agroforestry benefits and sustained reduction of emissions. It also reduced deforestation and created income generation for marginalised communities.

In Peru, AIDER (Association for Research and Integral Development) trained Indigenous peoples of the Peruvian Amazon to develop sustainable agroforestry business models and set up businesses. These businesses use agroforestry plots on previously degraded land to support forest conservation. They also create income from the sale of carbon credits.

An agroforestry project delivered by Agroicone in Brazil promoted the adoption of agroforestry systems in the Atlantic Forest. The project targeted local participation to engage marginalised communities, private sector, and environmental organisations. Results included the promotion of sustainable agriculture and the creation of economic and social benefits.

A look at future projects

UK PACT continues to work with country counterparts to improve emission reduction efforts.

In Brazil, the portfolio includes projects to improve AFOLU tools and approaches:

  • The Nature Conservancy (TNC) will be working with Pará’s State Government to access private finance for large-scale restoration using an Ecosystem Services Fund
  • The International Chamber of Commerce Brazil (ICC) and WayCarbon are developing methodologies to set up carbon markets with the Brazilian Government
  • The Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM) are working with Amazonian State Governments to improve carbon accounting from forest degradation in Amazon states
  • The Centre for Territorial Intelligence (CIT) and the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) are working to improve transparency and monitoring of deforestation-risk supply chains and rural properties

In Peru, the Research Institute of the Peruvian Amazon (IIAP) will be supporting sustainable management and community-led monitoring of Amazonian peatlands. Solidaridad will be strengthening the AFOLU capabilities of smallholder farmers to access global deforestation-free supply chains.

This year, UK PACT will also begin working with Ecuador and Bolivia to fund essential decarbonisation efforts across the Amazon.

In Bolivia, The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) will support the development of a National AFOLU system. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) will create a comprehensive Forest Reference Emissions Level (FREL). Both projects will help Bolivia access forest finance and meet international standards. They will also reduce deforestation and help Bolivia meet its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) goals.

In Ecuador, UNDP will work with two provinces, Zamora Chinchipe and Morona Santiago to integrate a AFOLU system. This will strengthen the value chains for sustainably produced cocoa, coffee and livestock, which form the basis of local producers' economic activities.​

In Bolivia and Ecuador, Practical Action and Carbon Trust will be working to strengthen AFOLU systems aligned with NDCs reporting and transparency requirements in agriculture, forestry and land-use.

The new projects are an important milestone for UK PACT and the partner countries. Improved AFOLU capabilities across the region will lead to greater transparency and effective decision making. It will help provide access to forest finance, reduce emissions, and align with international standards and commitments.

Get the latest insights from UK PACT projects and be the first to know about events, publications and calls for funding. Sign up today to receive more updates