Ford Foundation to support new ESG-linked fund focused on West Africa’s resources sector

The Ford Foundation will contribute US$3 million towards the launch of the Extractive Industry and Climate Change Governance Fund – an initiative promoting more equitable governance of natural resources in West Africa.

The five-year programme is hosted by the Africa Centre for Energy Policy and will focus on supporting a network of natural resource governance organisations and civic actors, anti-corruption organisations, budget advocates, and grassroots and community organisations primarily in Nigeria and Ghana.

“Climate change reflects a fundamental failure of global development that is rooted in the extraction of natural resources,” the American private foundation said in a media statement. “In West Africa, the extraction of metals, minerals and fossil fuels has exacerbated inequalities and caused severe environmental damage that drives climate change.”

Ford’s director of natural resources and climate change programme Anthony Bebbington said: “With renewed efforts toward energy transition, there is an opportunity to transform the natural resources sector toward embracing equitable governance and sustainable practices.

“An energy transition that is both low carbon and socially just will be an asset that helps economies to thrive in West Africa at the same time as it mitigates the impacts of climate change,” he added.

The Extractive Industry and Climate Change Governance Fund will help tackle dwindling funding support and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on attempts made by civic organisations in West Africa to promote policy actions targeting inequality.