The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved the creation of a fund to support the continent’s “transition to green growth.” The African Climate Change Fund (ACCF) will scale up to a multi-donor trust fund, which will be hosted and managed by the bank.

Speaking to the bank’s directors at a meeting in the Tunisian capital, Tunis, Alex Rugamba, director of the bank’s energy, environment and climate-change department, said the fund “will help facilitate countries’ access to the financing they need to protect their economies and environmental assets in the face of climate change.” He added, “Africa is the most vulnerable continent to the impacts of climate change, yet the region receives a very small share of climate finance as compared to other continents.”

The launch of the fund is the latest initiative by AfDB and other partners to support Africa’s shift to cleaner production methods, energy generation methods, increased energy efficiency and mitigation of pollution.

Rugamba said the new facility also would help the region’s countries prepare to access and efficiently use greater amounts of climate finance to build the region's capacity  to formulate and implement policy on construction, manufacturing and installation of various green technologies.

Apart from governments in Africa, other targeted recipients of support from the new fund include NGOs, research institutions, regional institutions and the bank itself.

AfDB said it may implement projects financed by the fund either on its own initiative or at the request of the project developer. According to Rugamba, the fund’s core intervention areas include climate finance readiness; climate-change and green growth mainstreaming; the preparation and financing of adaptation and mitigation projects; knowledge management and information sharing related to climate change; capacity building; the preparation of climate resilient and low-carbon strategies and policies; and analytical work related to green growth.

The launch of the fund comes at a time when many African countries have unveiled large renewable-energy projects, policies on green buildings, and mass-rapid-transport systems not only to enhance green jobs but cut down on their carbon footprint.

The bank also noted the region’s “lack of readiness and capacity to access international climate [funding and the] limited capacity of the African countries to negotiate international climate deals that could benefit the continent.”