Methane Fund and Blue Ribbon Panel

Since 2010, ICCI has served a secretariat function for the work of the Methane Blue Ribbon Panel, a group of leading scientists, methane project investors and former government and international organization leaders (see list below).  The Panel first convened in 2009, a few months prior to COP-15 in Copenhagen, where they released their initial report (see recommending a special fund to support development and financing of methane projects under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) as well as voluntary markets.

Since that time, the BRP has refined this proposal through several meetings and events organized by ICCI in 2010-12, including at COP-16 in Cancun, Mexico; COP-17 in Durban, South Africa; and COP-18 in Doha, as well as several Chatham House rules meetings.  The current proposal is for a streamlined “prototype” methane fund, the Prototype Methane Financing Facility, which would provide a guaranteed floor price for methane (as carbon credits) from qualifying projects that have gained CDM registration, but still been unable to obtain financing due to market uncertainty in the post-Kyoto era.

In 2011, Mexico, Bangladesh and UNEP endorsed the PMFF concept.  ICCI in 2012 worked with several donor governments on possible support for the proposed mechanism, potentially through the Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO).  At the same time, the G-8 in 2012 began a Methane Finance Study Group that included several Blue Ribbon Panel meeting participants, organized by the World Bank.  The Study Group released its report in May 2013 (see,,contentMDK:23401481~pagePK:64168445~piPK:64168309~theSitePK:4125853,), which drew extensively on Blue Ribbon Panel materials.

Discussions about a methane financing mechanism are currently focused on the possibility of a trust fund seated at the World Bank, with a launch currently proposed for COP-19 in Warsaw or shortly thereafter.  ICCI is participating in these discussions in an expert capacity.

ICCI’s work on the BRP, PMFF and with the Methane Finance Study Group has been made possible through the generous support of the Oak and the Flora foundations.  For more information, see

Methane Blue Ribbon Panel members and bios:

Science Members:

Dr. Luisa Molina is currently the president of the Molina Center for Strategic Studies in Energy and the Environment in La Jolla, California and principal research scientist at the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She has been involved in particular with the chemistry of stratospheric ozone depletion and urban air pollution. Recently she initiated a project involving an integrated assessment of air pollution in megacities, aimed at improving the environmental decision making process through education and the better use of scientific, technical, and socio-economic understanding.

Dr. Robert Watson has held many chaired or held many prestigious positions throughout his career, including positions at the White House, World Bank, NASA, and the UK Dept. of Environment, Food and Affairs. He has spent most of his life managing international environmental policies and advising governments including the IPCC, IAASTD, United States and UK governments. He has received numerous awards, including the UK’s Honorary “Companion of the Order of Saint Michael and Saint George”

Former Government/Multi-national Organizations:

Dr. Mohamed El-Ashry is a senior fellow with the UN Foundation. He served as CEO and chairman of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) from July 1994 to July 2003. Prior to joining the GEF he served as the chief environmental advisor to the president at the World Bank, and as senior vice president of the World Resources Institute. He has also served as senior environmental advisor to the UN Development Programme (UNDP), as special advisor to the secretary-general of the 1992 U.N. Conference on Environment and Development and as a member of the World Water Commission.

Kathleen Cravero is currently president of the Oak Foundation in Switzerland as well as Director of the UNDP’s Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery. Ms. Cravero built her career with UNICEF, WHO and UNDP. From March 2000 to March 2005, she served as Deputy Executive Director of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS with responsibilities in the areas of governance, resource mobilization, advocacy and leadership initiatives. Dr Cravero is also a Board Member of the Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum. She holds a Ph.D. in Political Science and a M.P.H. in Public Health. 

Melinda Kimble has been the UN Foundation’s Senior Vice President since 2001, and oversees the International Bioenergy Initiative. Prior to the Foundation, Ms. Kimble served as a state department foreign service officer. She served in policy-level positions in the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs and also in the Bureau of Oceans, International Environment and Scientific Affairs (OES), during which she led global environmental negotiations (e.g. Kyoto, 1997). She holds two master’s degrees, one in Economics from the University of Denver, and an MPA from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

Ambassador Bo Kjellen is a Senior Research Fellow at Stockholm Environment Institute. Prior to this, Amb. Kjellen spent most of his working life in Sweden’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs, with a concentration on multilateral diplomacy, environment and development issues, including posts as Ambassador to Hanoi, Head of Department for Multilateral Development Co-operation, and Permanent Representative to the OECD.

Dr. Ken Newcombe has over 30 years of experience in developing financially viable sustainable energy and forestry projects around the world.  As CEO of CQC, Ken is responsible for building positions in selected carbon assets for compliance and voluntary market emissions reductions world-wide. Before joining the private sector, Ken led the development of the Prototype Carbon Fund, a public-private partnership of the World Bank. Ken holds a doctorate in energy and natural resource management from the Australian National University and training in Business Management at Harvard Business School.

Rafe Pomerance is a founder of the Climate Policy Center and served as President of CA-CP following the merger of these two organizations in 2007. He began his work on climate change in 1978 while at Friends of the Earth and has most recently served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Environment and Development. Mr. Pomerance has held positions at the National Clean Air Coalition and the World Resources Institute, and has serves as Chairman for both the Board of American Rivers and the League of Conservation Voters.

Methane Project Investors:

Dr. Sunil Deshmukh is a founding member of the Sierra Club’s India Advisory Council, and was a former commodity trader in Wall Street. He worked with Goldman Sachs and Citibank in the US, but retired prematurely in 1994 to devote himself to a range of causes, including the Maharashtra Foundation, which funds small projects in his home state in India. He is currently Vice President of Constellation Energy

Mark Grobmyer currently serves as Chairman of the World Leaders Symposium Committee. The Committee was developed as a part of the Center for the Study of the Presidency Millennium Project, which he chaired. He has also served as a lecturer and speaker for many programs and seminars presented in the United States and several other countries. Mark has served as a senior advisor to the American Gas Association, the American Society of Association Executives, the International Sister Cities Conference and Chief Executive Magazine, the “Club Journal” of Fortune 1000 CEOs.

Christian Langaard is the Founder and Managing Director of Euro-Latin Capital. He has over 15 years of international investment banking experience at Credit Suisse First Boston and Banque Pariba, and built the bank’s highly profitable South American franchise. He is the Chairman of the Board of Marcuard Asset Management Latin America, and partner and member of the Board of Directors at Marcuard Holding. He obtained his MBA, Finance & International Business, at the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University.

Patrick Tam is general partner of Tsing Capital. He sat on the Washington governor’s commission, and helped create a $350 million Life Sciences Fund. He also headed a Washington State economic development agency, at which he obtained funding for commercial development in fuel cell, biodiesel, and waste treatment for Washington State. Patrick obtained BS and MS degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in Bioengineering from the University of California, Berkeley.