A year has passed since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The war has caused severe damage to critical infrastructure and the environment and is putting enormous pressure on people, society, businesses, and nature. On top of this, more than 14 million people have had to leave their homes. While the need for reconstruction is immense, it also presents an opportunity to build back in a more sustainable way towards a carbon-neutral and nature-positive future for Ukraine.
In July 2022, the Nordic Green Bank Nefco, owned by the five Nordic countries, launched the Green Recovery for Ukraine programme with the purpose of supporting municipalities in rebuilding critical infrastructure in an environmentally sustainable way. Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden have contributed some EUR 28 million in funds and the EU recently provided EUR 50 million for the programme.
The initiative was presented at COP27 in the Nordic Pavilion. Here Igor Korkhovyi, Deputy Minister for Communities and Territorial Development of Ukraine, said: “Our vision is that in the future, while modernising Ukraine, we will create a more efficient and more climate-neutral economy.”
Improve living conditions
The programme also aims to bring about swift improvements in living conditions for internally displaced people and permanent residents and to ensure that general recovery investments will provide Ukraine with a new, EU-aligned pathway for sustainable reconstruction. Right now, more than twenty projects with a focus on sustainable housing and basic municipal services such as heating, water and electricity supply are helping to improve living conditions for the people of Ukraine. Two examples of current initiatives are the installation of solar panels and 20 gas boilers to safeguard district heating supplies for more than 180,000 people.
We're looking forward to tapping into Nefco’s broad experience with municipal projects.
During the last decade, Nefco has partnered with more than a hundred Ukrainian municipalities and successfully financed and implemented more than 240 environmentally sound projects in energy efficiency, district heating, and other municipal services in Ukraine.
“Municipalities are key when it comes to rebuilding Ukraine. We're working with them on the ground and have already started the first projects within the programme. The Nordic countries have both the know-how and ability to support Ukraine in building back greener and better,” says Trond Moe, Managing Director of Nefco.
In a statement following the EU's EUR 50 million donation, EU Ambassador Matti Maasikas, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine, said: “We're looking forward to tapping into Nefco’s broad experience with municipal projects. Factoring in the green recovery from the outset will support Ukraine’s overall rebuilding as well as European integration.”