At the recent One Planet Summit for Biodiversity the Great Green Wall for the Sahel and Sahara Initiative (GGW) received $14 billion in additional funding pledges for the next ten years. This financial support will scale up efforts to restore degraded land, create green jobs, strengthen resilience and protect biodiversity. Among the financiers are the Government of France, who committed $14 billion; the African Development Bank ($6.5 billion) and the World Bank ($5 billion).
Started in 2007, the 8000 kilometre-long Great Green Wall is an African-led initiative, spanning 11 countries, to combat land degradation, desertification and drought. Climate change is having a crippling impact on the Sahel, happening one and a half times faster than the global average. The region experiences droughts every two years, instead of the typical 10-year cycle.
To compound its challenges, the Sahel is also dogged by poverty, rapid population growth, high unemployment rates, food shortages and insecurity.