ADMIRE – Turning ideas into instruments that attract private investment

June 25, 2015

Engaging the private sector in mitigation and adaptation actions is the goal of ADMIRE, a collaboration between United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) and UNEP DTU Partnership. Dedicated to “Adaptation, Mitigation, and Readiness,” ADMIRE focuses on developing frameworks and mechanisms that encourage private investment in both mitigation and adaptation actions. Unlike other programs with similar goals, ADMIRE’s aim is not to fund pilot or demonstration projects, but to develop viable ideas into NAMAs and actions to support NAPs and adaptation activities, transforming them into financially sustainable and implementable opportunities which are expected to continue after the lifetime of the project.

One of the most important aspects of the project is the selection process. Ideas are welcomed from all non-Annex 1 countries, as long as they focus on policy instruments or other financial incentives that encourage private investment in mitigation or adaptation actions, and have been endorsed by an appropriate government ministry. “Selection is not based on priority countries,” according to Søren Lütken, [Former ADMIRE Project Manager], “but the best ideas for projects.”

The initial screening phase assesses the idea’s technical feasibility, expected emissions reduction (in the case of mitigation) or adaptation benefits, and potential to attract private sector investment. If the idea makes the first cut, the team at UNEP DTU offer to work with proponents to further develop their idea before it is evaluated by ADMIRE’s Technical Review Committee against criteria on the idea’s on technical feasibility, political and financial viability. The selected few engage in a Memorandum of Understanding, after which UNEP DTU’s experts provide project support, and can engage as technical experts on the projects or utilize their extensive network of climate change specialists for technical assistance on the specific activities. Developing policy instruments and financial mechanisms is led by the ADMIRE team, in close collaboration with the relevant government ministry and proponent.

After ADMIRE’s launch in 2014, the first round of submissions resulted in engagements in 6 countries around the world. A second call for submissions was closed on 20 March 2015 with a further 3 country engagements, and a third call has just been announced and will close August 20, 2015. For more information, and to submit a project idea online, please visit the ADMIRE website:

A couple of examples of ideas that have been developed into NAMA development projects and adaptation actions through ADMIRE:

Mitigation Action: Sustainable charcoal in Cambodia

A long-time actor in promoting improved cookstoves, energy-efficient kilns and sustainable charcoal in developing countries, the French NGO Groupe Energies Renouvables, Environnment et Solidarités (GERES) submitted an idea to ADMIRE for a NAMA that would support the sustainable charcoal value chain in Cambodia. One of the main source of energy for urban populations, most charcoal is produced in inefficient kilns with non-sustainable wood that often comes from illegal timber sources. Yet this traditional fuel source is both necessary for daily cooking needs and a provider of income for the tens of thousands of Cambodians who sell it.

This ambitious project would aim to tackle all existing barriers to sustainable charcoal production, using GERES’ and other experts’ scientific findings.
GERES works to introduce micro-entrepreneurs and consumers, sustainable practices for charcoal production, which includes sustainable wood sourcing, efficient charcoal kiln technologies, quality marketing practices, as well as community business structuring all along the value chain. The final element is tax credits and incentives to promote investment in this renewable energy production. The NAMA’s objective is to provide a framework that would enable all these elements and promote the dissemination of sustainable charcoal throughout the country. More information are available on the GERES website:

Adaptation Action: A Mobile Farmer Calendar for Climate Adaptation in Ghana

With a mission to “amplify the voice of the under-heard,” the Ghana-based mobile communications service Votomobile is developing an adaptation idea through the ADMIRE project that would create a financing model for an interactive, mobile phone-based climate change adaptation information service for small rural farmers in Ghana. Increasingly, mobile phone technology is being used to reach isolated rural farmers in need of crucial information relating to fluctuations in weather and crop pricing, as well marketing news, growing seasons, and other issues. These systems use text and voice messaging as well as other communication technologies to quickly transmit important information to farmers, allowing them to respond with their own questions and comments. The service saves farmers time and money, helping them plan harvesting, learn about agricultural news, and negotiate prices without needing to travel long distances or rely on word-of-mouth.

Votomobile’s ADMIRE idea is a mobile communications service with a climate adaptation angle that would help farmers withstand and become resilient to climate-related shocks. The tailored, interactive mobile phone-based curriculum (also called a Farmer Calendar) is based on a farmer’s location, crops, growing season, and current climate events. The project would develop a baseline curriculum, establish partnerships with related services like mobile phone providers, the national weather service, and local radio stations, and would also create a sustainable financing model. An important point during the project implementation is that project should be self-sustaining after the lifetime of the project. For more information on Votomobile activities – visit