Press Release: Bloomberg Philanthropies and Builders Vision join the Global Fund for Coral Reefs Coalition
The Global Fund for Coral Reefs mobilises over USD $170 million as coral reefs and coastal communities face catastrophic loss without immediate action.
New York/Lisbon, 28 June 2022 – As coral reefs move faster toward extinction than any other ecosystem on Earth, the Global Fund for Coral Reefs (GFCR) today announced new commitments totaling USD $18 million as well as the addition of two new members to its growing Coalition. The announcements were made jointly during the Sustainable Blue Economy Investment Forum, hosted by the Governments of Kenya and Portugal, held during the UN Ocean Conference.
With coral reefs supporting one billion people globally and a quarter of all marine life, the loss of reef ecosystems would have devastating impacts around the world – collapsing livelihoods, eroding food-security, decreasing coastal protection, and eroding climate adaptation efforts. These newly announced contributions will be channeled through GFCR’s ‘Investment Ecosystem’ to catalytically scale a global blended finance portfolio of reef-positive businesses and financial solutions.
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director, Inger Andersen, stated: “Through innovative blended finance, the Global Fund for Coral Reefs aims to prevent the potential extinction of reef ecosystems in our lifetime. By unlocking groundbreaking private investments to reduce local degradation drivers, the GFCR Coalition is committed to giving coral reefs the greatest chance of surviving climate change. On behalf of partners, I am pleased to welcome Builders Vision and Bloomberg Philanthropies to the powerful GFCR Coalition.”
Founded by Lukas Walton, Builders Vision is an impact platform offering versatile philanthropic and investment tools to people and organizations committed to building a more humane and healthier planet. Builders Vision will join the GFCR coalition with an investment of USD $10 million – USD $5 million to the GFCR Equity Fund and a contribution of USD $5 million to the catalytic GFCR Grant Fund. With this commitment, Builders Vision becomes the first private investor to the GFCR Equity Fund. This milestone reinforces confidence in the potential for blended finance vehicles to attract private investors focused on accelerating nature-positive economic transitions.
“How we care for the environment is a reflection of how we care for one another. When it comes to restoring and preserving the world’s coral reefs, we have an urgent obligation to intervene and pursue innovations to create a flywheel effect to save these vibrant natural resources. Builders Vision is proud to make philanthropic and capital investments as part of the United Nations Coral Reef Fund’s powerful and growing toolbox. We also hope our support of the Equity Fund serves as a catalyst for new advocates and investors to join this critical mission,” says Lukas Walton, CEO and Founder of Builders Vision.
As climate change increasingly threatens key ocean ecosystems, Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Vibrant Oceans Initiative works around the world to advance evidence-based conservation practices and implement data-driven policies to protect our ocean and the 3 billion people that depend on them. As part of this work, Bloomberg focuses on regions that are home to a portfolio of coral reef ecosystems, identified in the 2018 groundbreaking 50 Reefs study that are most likely to survive climate change and repopulate surrounding reefs. The 50 Reefs study has since helped prioritize investment and conservation efforts to protect 60 coral reef ecosystems across over 40 countries through its clear, science-based framework. The globally renowned donor will join the GFCR with a contribution to the Grant Fund of USD $8 million.
“Coral reefs will require more than public resources to address this urgent crisis,” said Antha Williams, who leads environment programs at Bloomberg Philanthropies. “Working together as a coalition to accelerate private investment in these crucial ecosystems and pioneer innovative solutions is necessary to support the resilience of coral reefs and coastal communities around the world. Bloomberg Philanthropies is glad to join the Global Fund for Coral Reefs coalition, an important step to ensure the long-term survival of our world’s coral reefs and protect the world’s ocean.”
Launched in September of 2020 on the sidelines of the 75th United Nations General Assembly, the GFCR is the largest blended finance vehicle dedicated to Sustainable Development Goal 14, ‘Life Below Water’.
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About the Global Fund for Coral Reefs (GFCR)
The Global Fund for Coral Reefs (GFCR) is the first and only blended finance initiative dedicated to coral reefs globally. The public-private partnership is driven by foundations, Member States, UN Agencies, organizations, and the private sector. The GFCR Coalition includes the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation; Prince Albert II Monaco Foundation; the Governments of Germany, France, Canada, and the United Kingdom; the Green Climate Fund; Pegasus Capital Advisors; Builders Vision; Bloomberg Philanthropies; the International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF); the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP); the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN); and the Ocean Risk and Resilience Action Alliance (ORRAA).
The GFCR coalition aims to bridge the coral reef funding gap by facilitating an innovative ‘Reef-Positive Investment Ecosystem’ with an array of financial tools designed to incubate, de-risk and unlock public and private market-based investment aligned to conservation of coral reef refugia. The GFCR provides an implementation tool for national marine biodiversity conservation and blue economic transition ambitions. Emphasis is placed on climate-resilient ecosystems that are crucial for preventing reef extinction, supporting rich biodiversity, and providing critical ecosystem services.
About Builders Vision
At Builders Vision, we stand behind those on the frontlines working to build a more humane and healthy planet. We are proud to support the change makers and innovators who work on the ground every day to build a better future. We are focused on shifting markets and minds for good by pursuing solutions in oceans, energy, and food and agriculture.
Builders Vision uses a diverse set of tools under one roof – when deployed together they can create a flywheel-effect – with additional opportunities and investments created with each step we take. We provide funding to a range of impact-driven companies and organizations, offer resources to help them succeed and work with them to advocate and increase awareness about the solutions they are pursuing.
About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 941 cities and 173 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: the Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation, corporate, and personal philanthropy as well as Bloomberg Associates, a pro bono consultancy that works in cities around the world. In 2021, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $1.66 billion.