Job Opening

Posting Title: UNEP Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) - Consultant for Good Growth Partnership in Brazil
Department/Office: United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 19 April 2021 - 28 April 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-United Nations Environment Programme-154083-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

The ultimate result of the service will be strengthened enabling conditions for the provision of public and private capital at scale for sustainable palm oil production and the establishment of enhanced ESG policies, processes and procedures by the banks that will take part in the training programme to better capture deforestation risks in their books and portfolios. Trained with better tools and techniques to understand the scope of the risks they are exposed to, the target banks will be allowed to develop and implement appropriate strategies to reduce their contribution to the economic activities driving deforestation in the palm oil, beef and soy production sectors.

Work Location

Working Remotely

Expected duration

The expected duration is for 8 months.

Duties and Responsibilities

Background (Org. Setting)

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.

The overall objective of the UNEP’s Economy Division is to encourage decision makers in government, local authorities and industry to develop and adopt policies, strategies and practices and technologies that promote sustainable patterns of consumption and production, make efficient use of natural resources, ensure safe management of chemicals and contribute to making trade and environment policies mutually supportive. It promotes the development, use and transfer of policies, technologies, economic instruments, managerial practices and other tools that assist in environmentally sound decision making and the building of corresponding activities.

The United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) is the strategic partnership between the United Nations and over 300 banks, insurers and investors. For over 28 years UNEP FI has been shaping and driving the international sustainable finance agenda, setting global standards and growing a global network of leading financial institutions. Through its work-streams and regional activities, peer learning, methodology development, training and research, UNEP FI carries out its mission to help the financial industry align with and contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals and with that take on the crucial role it must play in achieving a sustainable future.

UNEP Finance Initiative in collaboration with the International Finance Corporation and in partnership with UNDP, WWF US and Conservation International, is executing a GEF funded project on enabling transactions for removing deforestation from commodity supply chains (“Good Growth Partnership”, hereinafter referred to as GGP) with a focus on palm oil in Indonesia and Liberia, soy in Brazil and beef in Paraguay. The project is comprised of three components:

1) Support to commercial transactions
2) Support to Financial Markets & Institutions
3) Support to Governments

In a rapidly evolving operating environment that increasingly recognize the importance of forests in supporting the functioning of agricultural commodity supply chains, risks created by unsustainable deforestation present a considerable threat for the long-term value of companies producing, transforming, transporting and selling these commodities.

For the financial institutions that invest in these companies, the misperception and even ignorance of these risks can result in a suboptimal allocation of the assets under their management and in imperfectly hedged and therefore not recoverable losses.

This consultancy will focus on GGP activities in Brazil. The banking community in this country often relies on the inclusion of Environmental, Social Governance (ESG) criteria in their investment decision-making processes to identify and manage potential environmental and social risks in their positions. However, and to date, deforestation risks have either been ignored in ESG criteria or inappropriately factored in.

The consultancy is two-fold. On the one hand, it will consist of providing technical expertise into the implementation of UNEP Finance Initiative workplan under the GGP Programme, ensuring timely delivery of activities in coordination with GGP partners. In addition, the consultant will also be responsible for the expansion of the training programme for Brazilian financial institutions specifically focused on increasing the capacity of the Central Bank of Brazil, Brazilian banks and investors to better assess deforestation risks in their ESG criteria and decision-making processes.

GGP ESG training

Under this track, the consultant will have to: (i) Provide technical expertise on sustainable finance and deforestation risk to Brazilian Banking associations, namely FEBRABAN, ADBE; (ii) Develop and draft a series of training modules to the Central Bank of Brazil in line with the agenda of the new green rural credit bureau; (iii) administer a post-training survey to over 30 banks to evaluate the effectiveness of the first phase of training focused delivered in December 2020; (iv) Provide expert advice to GGP project partners and develop a concept for training commodity production project developers on creating bankable projects; (v) engage local banks directly to leverage the capacity building program for new UNEP projects such as IFACC (Innovative Finance for the Amazon, Cerrado and Chaco); (vi) develop guidance to the FEBRABAN banking association on how to integrate, assess and manage deforestation risk in corporate credits; (vii) work closely with partners, including UNDP, WWF Brazil and Conservation International, to develop and deliver the programme in an effective and efficient manner to a group of selected institutions, (viii) develop a strategy for engagement of C-suite level executives to sensitize them on the materiality of deforestation as a financial risk; and (ix) organize outreach activities to sensitize stakeholders of the importance of including criteria of deforestation risk in their decision-making processes.

In-country technical advice and backstopping of consultants in relation to GGP and other sustainable land use activities of UN Environment

The consultant will be in charge of: (1) liaising with Government of Republic of Brazil such as the Ministry of Agriculture in support of the implementation and coordination of the GGP workplan, (2) technical backstopping for UN Environment sustainable land use activities, in Brazil, namely through the Finance Lab and the Brazilian Coalition for Forest, Climate and Agriculture (3) organising meetings, workshops and other in-country activities as part of the workplan, (4) Supporting the Project Manager in ensuring effective coordination with the partner IAP implementing agencies in-country, attending meetings and sharing updates on UNEP Finance Initiative and other UN Environment land use activities as needed (5) preparing and compiling inputs for reporting on the delivery of GGP activities in Brazil and (6) providing research support and advice to other UN Environment-led projects in the region bearing direct relevance for GGP, such as the Agri3 Fund, the Responsible Commodities Facility, the UN-REDD country activities on finance and private sector engagement as well as any activity of the new UNEP Land Use Finance Unit.

The specific objectives of the consultancy include:

1. Provide technical expertise on sustainable finance and deforestation risk to Brazilian Banking associations, namely FEBRABAN, ADBE.
2. Develop and draft a series of training modules to the Central Bank of Brazil in line with the agenda of the new green rural credit bureau.
3. Administer a post-training survey to over 30 banks to evaluate the effectiveness of the first phase of training focused delivered in December 2020 with the view of expanding the training program in subsequent years through the Brazilian Banking associations.
4. Provide expert advice to GGP project partners and develop a concept for training commodity production project developers on creating bankable projects.
5. Engage local banks directly to leverage the capacity building program for new UNEP projects such as IFACC (Innovative Finance for the Amazon, Cerrado and Chaco).
6. Develop guidance to the FEBRABAN banking association on how to integrate, assess and manage deforestation risk in corporate credits business lines.
7. Work closely with partners, including UNDP, WWF Brazil and Conservation International, to develop and deliver the programme in an effective and efficient manner to a group of selected institutions.
8. Develop a strategy for engagement of C-suite level executives to sensitize them on the materiality of deforestation as a financial risk.
9. Organize outreach activities to sensitize stakeholders of the importance of including criteria of deforestation risk in their decision-making processes.
10. Liaising with State and National institutions of the Government of Republic of Brazil such as Ministry of Agriculture and other key stakeholders such as the Climate Policy Institute in support of the implementation and coordination of the GGP workplan and other UN Environment sustainable land use activities in Brazil,;
11. Support the project manager to organize meetings, workshops and other in-country activities as part of the workplan;
12. Coordinating on a regular basis with GGP partners in-country, attending meetings and sharing updates on UNEP Finance Initiative or other UN Environment sustainable land use activities as needed;
13. Provide technical expertise on deforestation risk in Brazil to the Land Use Finance Unit and to in country forums such as the Finance Lab and the Brazilian Coalition on Forest, Climate and Agriculture and other platforms;
14. Preparing and compiling inputs for reporting on the delivery of GGP activities in Brazil;
15. Providing technical advice on sustainable finance to UN Environment-led projects in the LAC region bearing direct relevance for GGP, Agri3 Fund, the Responsible Commodities Facility, the UN-REDD country activities on finance and private sector engagement as well as any activity of the new UNEP Land Use Finance Unit.

Deliverables:

1. Draft concept for the guidance to the FEBRABAN banking association to mainstream deforestation risk in corporate credits delivered by May 2021.
2. Final draft of the guidance to the FEBRABAN on mainstream deforestation risk in corporate credits and delivered in the form of a training module by June 2021.
3. Design and deliver a post-training evaluation survey to all three banking associations by July 2021.
4. A stakeholder consultation strategy for engaging the C-suite leadership on deforestation risk issues as material financial issues by August 2021 and to be delivered as a webinar to select Senior leadership within banks by September 2021.
5. Develop a proposal to explore options for levering the GGP training program for banks on deforestation risks through other UNEP programs in Brazil, namely the IFACC project by October 2021.
6. Develop a proposal to the Central Bank of Brazil in line with the agenda of the new green rural credit bureau to train the supervisors of the Central Bank by June 2021 with the final training program to be delivered by November 2021.
7. Series of up to 3 virtual workshops and/or webinars to disseminate the results of GGP Transaction work products and reinforce the engagement process with the investment community by December 2021.
8. Provide input into ongoing research and technical studies of the land use finance team such as business case for sustainable soy production through review of documents, sharing of relevant data and case studies. The input will be delivered on as needed basis as the team requires specific input.

Specific tasks and responsibilities

1st deliverable - Draft concept for the guidance to the FEBRABAN banking association to mainstream deforestation risk in corporate credits.
2nd deliverable – Final draft of the guidance to the FEBRABAN on mainstream deforestation risk in corporate credits and delivered in the form of a training module by June 2021. In addition to this, to develop a proposal to the Central Bank of Brazil Central Bank of Brazil in line with the agenda of the new green rural credit bureau to train the supervisors of the Central Bank.
3rd deliverable – Design and deliver a post-training evaluation survey to three banking association.
4th deliverable – A stakeholder consultation strategy for engaging the C-suite leadership on deforestation risk issues as material financial issues.
5th deliverable – A webinar for engaging the C-suite leadership on deforestation risk issues as material financial issues to select Senior leadership within banks.
6th deliverable – A proposal to explore options for levering the GGP training program for banks on deforestation risks through other UNEP programs in Brazil, namely the IFACC project.
7th deliverable - Final training program delivered to the supervisors of the Central Bank of Brazil in line with the agenda of the new green rural credit bureau.
8th deliverable - Series of up to 3 virtual workshops and/or webinars to disseminate the results of GGP Transaction work products and reinforce the engagement process with the investment community.

The consultant shall be under the overall supervision of the Head UNEP FI and report directly to UNEP FI Signatory Programme Officer. The consultant should take direction from the Programme Officer while final deliverables shall also be approved by Head of UNEP FI.

Qualifications/special skills

Skills: The ideal candidate should have strong expertise in the integration of ESG criteria for the financial sector and previous experience in assisting banks in their integration efforts, either directly as a collaborator in a financial institution or as someone who has trained banks in the past. Knowledge of REDD+, zero deforestation commodity supply chains, and other landscape investments would also be an asset. Experience of coordinating or implementing projects within the UN system would be an advantage.

Academic Qualifications: Master’s Degree is required in one or several of the following areas: economics, finance, business administration, international relations, development studies or environmental management, or related areas and experience could be taken in lieu.

Experience: At least five years of work experience, working in sustainable finance either in the private sector, or an international or non-governmental organization working on environmental finance or environmental issues.

Language: English is a working language of UNEP FI. Fluency in Portuguese is a requirement for this position and proficiency in Spanish is an asset.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

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