Advancing Capacity for the Environment (ACE)

ACE is a global USAID program that facilitates the Agency’s ambitious work to fight climate change, conserve biodiversity and manage natural resources, improve land governance, and expand access to secure, modern energy and resilient infrastructure. The program strengthens capacities for technical leadership and effective programming through integrated support in four areas: communications, knowledge management, training, and organizational development.


The intensity and complexity of today’s environmental challenges – from climate change and ocean plastic pollution to natural resource degradation and biodiversity loss – threaten to reverse decades of progress in global development. To sustain improvements in human welfare, USAID is taking bold action to address these challenges through investments that cut across all technical sectors.

This requires a shift in Agency programming toward greater integration and collaboration, as well as enhanced policy guidance and thought leadership. ACE is designed to meet these needs through technical assistance to USAID’s Washington offices and field Missions to sustain and grow their capacities for communication, learning, and knowledge sharing. By enhancing USAID effectiveness, the ACE program contributes to positive and sustainable development outcomes globally with a focus on Agency programs in the environment, energy, and infrastructure sectors.

ACE Approach

ACE employs an integrated framework to drive synergies and build linkages across the program’s main task areas through:
Generating new information and knowledge by drawing on the growing evidence base for more effective, equitable environmental and climate change programming.
Capturing this information in user-friendly ways—through the USAID Links websites, communities of practice, and lessons from USAID’s programs to ensure that this evidence can inform future work.
Sharing best practices in environmental programming through innovative communications that reach global audiences to improve development outcomes.
Applying knowledge through state-of-the-art training, facilitation, and organizational development to help USAID staff and partners build the skills to become agents for integrated climate and environment action.

ACE Programmatic Areas

• Air Quality
• Biodiversity
• Climate and Cross-Cutting Strategies
• Energy
• Green Cities
• Infrastructure
• Land and Resource Governance
• Natural Climate Solutions
• Ocean Plastic Pollution

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