The Global Environment Facility was established on the eve of the Rio Earth Summit to tackle our planet’s most pressing environmental problems. Since then, it has provided more than $21.7 billion in grants and mobilized an additional $119 billion in co-financing for more than 5,000 projects and programs. The GEF is the largest multilateral trust fund focused on enabling developing countries to invest in nature, and supports the implementation of major international environmental conventions including on biodiversity, climate change, chemicals, and desertification. It brings together 184 member governments in addition to civil society, international organizations, and private sector partners. Through its Small Grants Programme, the GEF has provided support to more than 26,000 civil society and community initiatives in 135 countries.

CEO and Chairperson

Lawyer by profession, politician by choice, and conservationist at heart, Carlos Manuel Rodriguez was elected as CEO and Chairperson of the Global Environment Facility by its governing body, the GEF Council, in June 2020.

GEF Council

The Council, the GEF's main governing body, comprises 32 members appointed by constituencies of member countries.


The GEF’s governing structure is organized around an Assembly, Council, Secretariat, 18 implementing agencies, a Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel, and the Independent Evaluation Office.


GEF funds are available to developing countries and countries with economies in transition seeking to meet the objectives of international environmental conventions and agreements. Support is provided to government agencies, civil society organizations, private sector companies, research institutions, among other partners, to implement projects and programs related to environmental conservation, protection, and renewal.

GEF Timeline

GEF Timeline