Sustainable India Finance Facility
The Sustainable India Finance Facility (SIFF) provides a catalytic platform for unlocking capital from investors and private finance institutions to channel resources into overlooked environmental sectors with positive transformative potential in India.
SIFF bridges the gap between the government, private sector, and civil society, coordinating cross-functionally to support the country in working towards its inclusive development and emissions reduction goals as stated in its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC). SIFF is a partnership facilitated by the United Nations Environment Programme, the World Agroforestry Centre and BNP Paribas SA. It facilitates long-term investments to reverse the continued depletion of agricultural systems, fisheries, forests, renewable energy, and wildlife, with a special focus on improving the well-being of marginalized communities.
Instead of a conventional ‘concentrated risk’ approach where all the risk is concentrated at the hands of the borrower, SIFF mainstreams a unique ‘distributed’ risk model that has a host of significant actors assuming responsibility for segments of the risk along the value chain making the projects ‘investable’. This enables the provision of financing to sectors that typically do not qualify for loans due to an inability to provide returns within short repayment periods and high interest rates. The combination of credit guarantees from development finance institutions ensures that capital can be made available at rates notably below current market rates for a duration that allows the projects to generate returns for marginalized communities while ensuring considerable social, environmental and economic returns. A paired grant component provides technical assistance and co-funds early stage development costs, offering an opportunity for philanthropic foundations and corporates to leverage their funding with private finance.
Some of the key projects supported by SIFF are:
Zero Budget Natural Farming in Andhra Pradesh
SIFF is supporting the Government of Andhra Pradesh’s efforts to become India’s first Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF) state by converting 6 million farmers cultivating 8 million hectares to 100% chemical free agriculture by 2024. This is an unprecedented transformation towards sustainable agriculture at a system scale that is enhancing the resilience of smallholders in varying agro-climatic zones, promoting gender-sensitive development and providing an opportunity for reclaiming planetary boundaries. ZBNF is a unique best-practice model of low-input/high output agriculture that enhances farmer’s welfare utilizing low-cost and inorganic chemical fertilizer free strategies.
Conservation and Livelihoods Generation in the Western Ghats
SIFF is working with entrepreneurs on a range of interventions that will deliver economic returns through conservation and community forestry in the Western Ghats including protecting estuaries, watersheds, developing sustainable fisheries, biodiversity friendly bamboo plantations and NTFPs based premium markets
Improving Air Quality and Community Health in Northern India
SIFF is currently working with state governments and key industry actors to advance innovative ideas in biomass to bioethanol and biomass to bio-CNG conversion to remedy the situation.
For more information, visit SIFF.