Who we are

The Microfinance for Ecosystem-based Adaptation (MEbA) project seeks to provide vulnerable rural and peri-urban populations with access to microfinance products and services that allow them to invest in activities that improve their income, increase their climate resilience and allow them to sustainably use ecosystems and their services.

We focus on developing solutions for Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) and their clients to increase their capacity to manage climate information and risks, while promoting ecosystem-based adaptation options (EbA).

This project is funded by Germany’s Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) and is implemented by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in six Latin American countries and two African countries.

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History of the MEbA-project

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  • 2012

    2012

    The MEbA project is approved by the BMU and it is launched in Colombia and Peru.

  • 2013

    2013

    UNEP starts working with five Microfinance Institutions to develop EbA-oriented products.

    • Colombia: Bancamía – Crezcamos – Contactar
    • Peru: Solidaridad – Fondesurco

    Frankfurt School is the executing partner.

  • 2014

    2014

    First EbA loans are disbursed.

  • 2014

    2014

    3 EbA demonstration farms are opened to the public.

  • 2014

    Project results are presented in UNFCCC COP 20.

  • 2016

    Project results are presented in the UN Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC SBI/SBSTA 44).

  • 2016

    2016

    2 additional EbA demonstration farms are opened to the public.

  • 2017

    2017

    Colombia prioritizes the initiative presented by UNEP in partnership with Bancóldex to scale up the MEbA approach with funding from the Green Climate Fund (GCF).

  • 2018

    Based on results obtained thus far:

    • 10,000 EbA loans disbursed
    • US$ 12 million in private funds towards EbA
    • 3,000 farmers sensitized on EbA
    • a set of tools and methodologies developed and tested

    The BMU approves a second phase of the MEbA project (MEbA II).
    12 Microfinance Institutions are assessed.

  • 2019

    2019

    UNEP with partners Fundecooperación and YAPU Solutions start working with 9 Microfinance Institutions towards implementing green finance strategies:

    • Colombia: Coomultagro – Fundación delamujer *
    • Costa Rica: Fundecooperación
    • El Salvador: Banco de Fomento Agropecuario (BFA)
    • Dominican Republic: Banco Adopem
    • Ecuador: Banco Codesarrollo
    • Senegal: Caurie *, Banque Agricole
    • Benin: Comuba **

    * Supported by BNP Paribas
    ** Supported by Fondation Grameen Crédit Agricole

  • 2019

    A Readiness proposal is approved by the GCF to strengthen Bancóldex in its accreditation process and to conduct studies to develop a Full Funding Proposal to scale up the MEbA approach in Colombia.

  • 2019

    A strategic partnership is established with BNP Paribas to support the implementation of MEbA’s green strategy in two MFIs.

  • 2020

    Bancóldex publishes a dedicated pilot credit line towards EbA investments.

  • 2020

    UNEP develops a proposal to the Global Environment Facility (GEF) to replicate the MEbA approach in El Salvador with BFA, and a regional component for Central America.

EbA Solutions

The MEbA project has identified more than 40 adaptation solutions that allow small-scale farmers to invest in activities related to ecosystem sustainability, improving their income and resilience towards climate change effects.

These solutions are financed through microcredits and meet, either on their own or in synergy with other options, the following MEbA criteria:

  1. Reduce pressure on ecosystems and the services they provide;
  2. Enhance the social or economic resilience of human populations vulnerable to climate change;
  3. Reduce risks associated with climate events in production activities;
  4. In their implementation, protect, restore or use biodiversity and ecosystems in a sustainable manner, and
  5. Have a positive impact on individuals' economy in the short term.

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Organic fertilizers

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Beekeeping

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Solar dehydrators

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Silvopastoral systems

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Family orchards

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Greenhouses

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Vermicomposting

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Efficient irrigation systems

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Agroforestry systems

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Conservation agriculture

Stakeholders

Strategic partners

MEbA I (2012 - 2017)

MEbA II (2018 - 2020)