Erik Solheim has broad experience of a number of Norwegian peace efforts. From 1998 to 2005 he facilitated the peace process in Sri Lanka that led to a ceasefire agreement and what is called the Oslo Declaration, which proposed the establishment of a federal state in Sri Lanka. He went on to serve as Norwegian minister for the environment and international development from 2005 to 2012. In this period he played a key role in the peace process in Nepal between the Maoists and the government. As minister, he also contributed to peace processes in Sudan, Nepal, Myanmar and Burundi.
While he was in office Norwegian international aid grew to 1% of GDP, he established the Norwegian International Climate and Forest Initiative, and he put in place the Nature Management Act. He has been leader of the Norwegian Socialist Left Party in addition to being a member of Parliament. From 2012 to 2016 he led the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee and from 2016 to 2018 was head of UN Environment. He joined NOREF as an associate in 2019.