October 13, 2016


By Dolphine Magero

CCCF                           County Climate Change Fund
WAPC                         Ward Adaptation Planning Committees        
PFMA                         Public Finance Management Act   
CIDP                           County Integrated Development Plan
GCF                             Green Climate fund       
ERPA                           Emissions Reduction Purchase Agreement
Ci-Dev                         Carbon Initiative for Development   
IFAD                             International Fund for Agricultural Development
SREP                            Scaling up Renewable Energy Program in Low Income Countries                    
SCF                               Strategic Climate Fund
CIF                                Climate Investment Fund
CSO                              Civil society
GEF                               Global Environmental Facility.
UNFCC                          United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
UNCHE                         United Nations Conference on Human Environment
UNCED                         United Nations Conference on Environment and Development
POPs                             Persistent Organic Pollutants
CBD                               Convention on Biological Diversity
SBSTTA                         Subsidiary Body on Scientific Technical and Technological Advice
CHM                             Clearing House Mechanism
UNEP                            United Nations Environmental Programme
UNDP                            United Nations Development Programme
ICRAF                            World Agroforestry Centre.
FAO                               Food and Agricultural Organization
NEMA                           National Environmental Management Act.
SBI                                Subsidiary Body for Implementation.
CTS                               Committee on Science and technology.

The issue of climate change has been referred to being the greatest threat to humanity. It has been of major concern to the entire world and its effect has been felt significantly, especially in the 21st century. This paper gives a brief history on how the world came together to discuss matters of climate change and matters of climate finance which is one of the key ways of mitigating the effects on climate change. It seeks to discuss how funds for climate change mitigation are mobilized and how they trickle down to the grass root level where the burden of climate change is most felt. In addition, it highlights the entities that deal with climate finance and how they help climate change mitigation at the county level in Kenya through channeling of these funds. More so discusses the methods of climate change mitigation that have been conducted down at the county level which have borne fruit and have had significant impact on not only on the climate-change-global-crisis but that have also had impact on the lives of the affected communities.

According to Managing Land Degradation in Kenya by Gideon H.N., It was not until 1972 at the Stockholm conference on Human Environment ( UNCHE)  that the global community begun to take note of the changes that were occurring in the environment due to the activities of mankind.  Here it was proposed that the world communities should set a date to meet and discuss the way forward on the issue concerning the environment. This would be done at the Agenda 21 world meeting which was a meeting to discuss how the world would go about the issues that would affected the 21st century. This meeting was held in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil in 1992 and the world would meet under the umbrella of United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) making 1992 to be the baseline year for all environmental issues. This would be also called the Earth summit. This meeting would be fruitful as it came up with; the Agenda 21 document, the Rio principals on Environment and Development, A statement on forests and four binding agreements. The fourth one which is most important in this context entailed; a binding agreement on Biodiversity, a binding agreement on Climate change and a binding agreement on Drought and desertification. They were initially three but a fourth binding agreement came up much later which was a binding agreement on Persistent Organic Pollutants(POPs) there four would then be known as the Rio Conventions. Counties that had agreed to these documents would be required to abide by these agreements failure to which there would be consequences. For the implementation of these agreements 600billion USD would be required of which 60% would be sourced from local resources of the involved countries and the remaining 40% would be sourced from international donors. This would mean that each country would set aside money from their national budget to environmental issues which would be the baseline for the total environmental funds. And the incremental costs would be met by international standards. The sourcing of this 40% would create the need for a mobilizer or a body to mobilize these funds thus giving birth to the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) whose work would be to mobilize and distribute funds according to decisions made at the UN level. Each of the agreements would have a 5-level structured level of decision making body.
These levels of decision making would be same for also the other three binding agreement with the most critical level of decision making in this research paper being the GEF. This level would have a secretariat who would implement these decisions made via three implanting agencies therefore giving birth to UNEP, UNDP and the World Bank. From these implementing agencies funds would be channeled to the executing agents such as ICRAF and FAO. Though this money could be channeled to the various institutions. There are three types of funding levels which include the full scale project, the medium sized projects and the small grants project. Small grants projects would amount up to USD 50000, the medium scale project would be between USD 50000 to USD 1M and the full scale project would amount up to more than 1M. Full-scale and medium sized projects would be handled by bodies such as NEMA and the small grants projects would be handled by bodies like UNDP.

The term climate finance dates back to 1992 when the United Nations Framework Conventions on Climate Change (UNFCC) agreed that developed countries shall provide “new and additional” financial resources to developing countries. These finances would be channeled through the Global Environmental Facility (GEF). The GEF was later replaced by the Global Climate Fund (GCF) as the main channel for these finances. Climate finance is therefore, financing channeled by national, regional and international entities for climate change mitigation and adaptation projects and programs according to Wikipedia. This definition is coined as a result of the blame placed immensely on the developed countries for their great impact on the climate change. This is due to the fact that they are believed to have established the very first industries in the world therefore initiating the pollution on the environment which eventually led to climate change. They are also believed to own most of the industries that have impacted the environment through greenhouse gas emissions in both their countries and the developing countries. They are therefore to compensate these developing countries through climate financing.  Climate finance in simpler terms refers to all financial flows relating to climate change mitigation and adaptation. Therefore Kenya as a developing country becomes of key interest as I strive to investigate how developing nations handles the climate finance it receives both from outside and from within. This paper dwells on climate finance in Kenya as a nation and how Kenya manages the funds it receives of climate mitigation at the county level. 

Kenya as a country has launched a 15member task force chaired by the Principal Secretary for Environment and natural Resources Dr. Richard Lesiyampe under the ministry of Environment and Natural resources that constitutes of individuals such as from the Kenya Climate Change Working Group, Transparency International (K), the Kenya Association of manufactures, and the University of Nairobi among others. This team is to lead dialogues, advocate for climate change legislation and advocate for low carbon for sustainable development in the country. The devolution government has allowed Kenyan communities better access to climate financing according to a blogger called Jane Kiiri. Makueni County became the first county to enact the new climate financing legislation as farmers have been able to learn about crops for climate adaptation planning. This County Climate Change Fund (CCCF) has enabled counties such as Makueni to source out climate finance from their own budget as well as from national and international levels. Currently in Kenya, Isiolo, Wajir Garissa and Kitui are the only four arid and semi-arid counties that are at the mature stages of approving their CCCF legislation. The CCCF legislation will ensure counties set aside part of their budget for adaptation finance and through the elected Ward Adaptation Planning Committees (WAPCs) who will decide on how 70% of the money raised, is to be used in the climate change adaptation. Through this channel, the individual member of the society at the grassroots level, who experiences the burden of climate change at first hand and who knows where the problems and the solution lie, will have a say on how these funds will be utilized. In Isiolo the funds has enabled the building of sand dams to trap the rain water providing clean and reliable source of water during drought.

This fund in Isiolo has also helped to strengthen the customary resource management institutions like the “dedhas” among the Borana communities and has been used to renovate veterinary laboratories that play a key role in diagnosing and treatment of livestock as well as rehabilitating the fence water pans that are important water sources for the wet seasons. The CCCF in the country works in accordance with the country’s Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) that empowers the county government’s financial body with permission from the county assembly to establish a public fund that will be resourced from different sources. Climate change adaptation projects are included in the County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP) in order to enable funding from the county government. The CCCF legislation also enables counties to become executing entities in the Green Climate fund (GCF) which will considerable increase available resources to finance investments in adaptation and resilient building in support of community based adaptation. With the success of CCCF, Kenya has become a role model for countries such as Mali and Senegal who are on the path to adopt the same forum.

Kenya as a county is not only trying to combat the effects of climate change in the country but it is also trying to reduce and if possible curb greenhouse gas emissions through low carbon development initiatives. This is in line with the country’s vision 2030 project that seeks to reduce carbon emission by 2030. A good example of such initiatives is the SimGas biogas system under the GHG which signed its first Emissions Reduction Purchase Agreement (ERPA) with the World Bank’s Carbon Initiative for development (Ci-Dev) which entailed the purchase of 500,000 carbon credits that will hopefully improve the affordability of rural households to invest in the biogas technology. This biogas system integrates farm solutions for the rural households for instance, manure from livestock is used as a raw product and the end products are organic slurry and biogas. The biogas is used as a clean cooking fuel that in no way affects the environment and the slurry is used as fertilizer for the crops as well as fodder for animals. This acts as a form of recycling that will minimize wastage as all end products are used up again and has no harm to the environment considering also the fact that it is cheap and affordable to the poorest of households. This reduces the loss of our carbon sink as there is no longer the need for deforestation in order to get wood for fuel. The acquisition of the GHG emissions reductions by the Ci-dev for households that purchase this biogas system will be beneficial also as the standard warranty for biogas system of three years will be extended to five years thereby increasing the consumers’ confidence and lower the thresholds for consumers to invest in the systems technology. The Ci-Dev will contribute USD 125 million towards the SimGas biogas system in order to implement innovative and transformative energy business access models in low income countries such as Kenya.

simgas biogas system
Kenya has another biogas technology called flexibiogas that is suitable for small farmers with limited livestock and has garnered support from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). This system entails a bio-digester device made of industrial sheets and pipes estimated to cost about USD 500 with the benefit of generating gas almost immediately. It requires 60kgs of manure to produce 1000litres of gas that is the average amount of gas required for a household. This system caters the small scale farmer as it provides fuel for the household and also manure to cultivate a small piece of land. This system is not only limited to farmers with cows but can also run on poop from chicken or anything bio-digestable like garden weeds, kitchen and market wastes and water hyacinth. This system is suitable for all types of farmers either in the lake regions or the rest of the regions across the country.

The Kenyan government does not work alone in this battle against climate change and climate financing but receives support from other entities such as the Scaling up Renewable Energy Program (SREP) in Low Income Countries which is funded by the Strategic Climate Fund (SCF) and the Climate Investment Fund (CIF) which pledge to give USD 318 million towards climate mitigation. Other key stakeholder include the civil society (CSOs) who have not been left behind in the climate finance arena. This particular stakeholder has helped to set the investment approach and help to involve communities in activities of climate mitigation and adaptation.

1. Jane kiiri blog on climate change.

6. Biogas.co.ke
7. Managing land degradation in Kenya by Gideon H.N Nyamasyo  and Teressa N. Kyalo.



  1. Good academic paper Dolphine. Keep up the good work. It was nice listening to the presentation during the writer`s workshop

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