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Sustainable financing for biodiversity conservation – a review of experiences in German development cooperation

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The financial resources needed for globally implementing the Aichi Biodiversity Targets have been estimated at US$ 150–440 billion per year (CBD COP11, 2012) – of which only a fraction is currently available. Significant efforts have been undertaken in many countries to increase funding for biodiversity conservation. Nonetheless, this funding shortage remains immense, acute and chronic. However, we do not lose biodiversity and ecosystems primarily for lack of conservation funding but also due to poor governance, wrong policies, perverse incentives and other factors. This begs the question: How should limited conservation resources be used? For directly tackling biodiversity threats, for addressing the underlying drivers, or rather for strengthening the financial management and fundraising capacity of implementing organisations? As country contexts differ, so do the answers. This report synthesizes experiences of German development cooperation working towards improved biodiversity finance in eight countries: Viet Nam, Namibia, Tanzania, Cameroon, Madagascar, Mauritania, Ecuador and Peru. Our findings suggest a shift in perspective in the international biodiversity financing debate: We need to move from a focus on innovative financing mechanisms towards thinking ‘innovation’ more broadly. Financial resource mobilisation needs to go hand in hand with efforts to slow the drivers of conservation costs and to improve effective spending capacity. For this, the constraints to financial sustainability of biodiversity conservation need to be better understood at country level. Innovative financing mechanisms can be part of the solution and deliver multiple benefits only if their design is carefully fitted to context. Beyond that, landscape approaches to conservation make clear that investing in healthy ecosystems is critical for livelihoods and development.
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... However, while current levels of finance for conservation have been described as a fraction of those needed (e.g. OECD, 2020; IPBES, 2019; Berghöfer et al., 2017;Clark et al., 2018;Parker et al., 2012;McCarthy et al., 2012;Butchart et al., 2010), our understanding of the global and national landscape for biodiversity finance, how much we spend, who spends it, and to what end, has remained remarkably poor (Brockington and Scholfield, 2010;Salcido et al., 2009;Waldron et al., 2017). ...
... NBERs can provide an evidence base to advocate for resource mobilisation and to improve the effectiveness of expenditure (BIOFIN, 2018). They can open up opportunities to manage biodiversity expenditure more strategically by revealing opportunities to increase costeffectiveness, reduce inefficiencies and improve financial management (Alker et al.:5, 2017;Berghöfer et al., 2017;BIOFIN, 2018). They are a first step in the Secretariat to the CBD's wider ambitions to catalyse a shift towards strategic national financial planning for biodiversity conservation and to introduce financial language to this planning (BIOFIN, 2018; Secretariat of the CBD, 2012). ...
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How much money is being spent on conserving biodiversity? Is it enough? Who is funding national biodiversity conservation and what sort of actions receive the most funding? How can we find synergies between the financing of biodiversity and of ecosystem services? Historically these sorts of questions have been hard to answer. The introduction of the Convention on Biological Diversity’s Resource Mobilisation Strategy with new requirements to monitor finance for biodiversity is, for the first time, driving efforts to track finance for conservation through National Biodiversity Expenditure Reviews (NBERs). In theory, this can help inform strategies to upscale resources for biodiversity conservation. However, NBERs also present methodological challenges, while their value remains untested. Using Ireland as a case study, this paper explores the uses of NBERs, examines their methodological challenges and discusses their potential implications for national biodiversity strategies. The findings reveal that the process of tracking financial flows requires the division of biodiversity finance in a way that may not reflect its complex character. Moreover, the focus on allocation and distribution of finance can be at the expense of understanding the effectiveness of biodiversity spending. Nevertheless, in the context of the promotion of market-based approaches, providing an evidence base for whether, where and when resource mobilisation is needed can be argued to be a step in the right direction.
... These numbers hint at the importance of environmental benefits to Namibian society, and the significant role played by conservation in this context. Namibia boasts a diversity of conservation governance types and management regimes, each with different financial constraints and opportunities (Turpie et al. 2010;NACSO 2015;Berghöfer et al. 2017). Expenditures on biodiversity conservation including PAs (from all sources) peaked near N$1.2 billion in 2014/2015 but are expected to stagnate (NNF 2014). ...
... If sustainable financing is not ensured, any conservation achievements are likely to be lost without continuing effective conservation management. Funding volatility seriously impacts conservation outcomes (Chen et al. 2014;Berghöfer et al. 2017). ...
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Previous studies on community-based natural resource management have repeatedly underlined the significance of the design principles for sustainable commons governance developed by Elinor Ostrom. In this paper, we apply the principles heuristically to the case of the Sikunga Channel Fish Protection Area (FPA), a recently established fish reserve in the Upper Zambezi in Namibia. Based on qualitative fieldwork including semi-structured household interviews, expert interviews, focus group discussions and participant observation, we assess the utility of Ostrom’s design principles as guidance for promoting sustainable fisheries co-management structures. Our results indicate that the lack of a sustainable financing mechanism is both a major source of resentments at Sikunga and the main obstacle for sound resource management, endangering the long-term effectiveness and social acceptance of the fish reserve.
... The pressing nature of climate change and biodiversity loss indicates the need to step up financing to combine finance for climate and biodiversity action and also to understand the impacts of such investments. Recent research highlights that the biodiversity (and the climate) financing challenge goes beyond the finance gap and encompasses a set of other related challenges that include, among others, improving governance, understanding its effectiveness and refining allocation mechanisms (Berghöfer et al., 2017). ...
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Sustainable development requires that the climate system be stabilised between 1.5°C and 2°C of average global warming. This necessitates a drastic reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions. Developing countries and emerging economies are increasingly the focus here. These nations already account for two-thirds of global emissions. Failure to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement would ultimately undermine the achievement of just and sustainable global development that leaves no one behind. A development-oriented strategy that achieves the necessary reduction in emissions requires both climate change mitigation and development cooperation across policy fields. Tackling the now unavoidable impacts of climate change must also include matters related to land use, marine conservation and global trade. The Paris Agreement and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development provide the necessary objectives and normative foundation for political action. Consistently implementing the objectives of both agendas is the key challenge for international policymakers, global corporations and for communities. In this context, it is necessary to keep all countries and population groups in view, aligning with the requirement of leaving no one behind. In addition to overarching approaches, individual action areas at the interface between climate policy and sustainable development are highly relevant. The most notable of these action areas are global energy production, the political design of urbanisation, sustainable agriculture, forest and ecosystem conservation, and the management of global freshwater resources. There are already many vantage points for international climate cooperation with developing and emerging countries. Their central role in achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement can therefore be strengthened in a sustainable manner. Provided the political will is there on the part of the partner countries and the respective national frameworks are created, the above mentioned action areas offer numerous options for intervention. This could effectively leverage the potential and experience of agents of international cooperation. The recommendations of the authors serve as examples and are spelled out in detail in the presented study.
... One of the few permitted activities is: tourism. According to Berghöfer et al. (2017) to implement sustainable tourism, in conjunction with conservation objectives, it is required to join particular conditions such as: investment security, a well-developed tourism market, and a convergence between tourism and conservation activities. ...
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The main objective of this work is to determine the landscape planning alternatives of the populations that have a direct relationship with the mangrove ecosystems (Bunche community). The theoretical foundation is the Geo-ecology of landscapes (GEL). The phases that were fulfilled are: i) characterization of the physical and natural landscape; ii) characterization of the socio-cultural landscape by participatory techniques, and secondary information. The participatory techniques were: Workshops, Social mapping and semi- structured interviews. iii) Integrate the information collected from the landscapes: physical, natural, social and cultural; in order to determine the most appropriate and sustainable management alternatives in the community. Social perception was the main information to raise the conclusive alternatives. The population of Bunche has unfavorable socio-economic figures, highlighting that almost the entire population lives in poverty due to unsatisfied basic needs. The constant threat and destruction of mangroves (mostly blame shrimp) is the main perception of the population; as well as his manifest desire to reverse this situation. The initial characterization resulted in 10 landscapes, where the social and natural component interact. The climate present in the population is mainly rain, with two ecosystems: Forests of the equatorial Chocó and the mangroves of the equatorial Chocó. The sustainable planning of the territory must start from: sustainable tourism and agroecology. It is also possible to implement mangrove recovery processes with the support of the community
... One of the few permitted activities is: tourism. According to Berghöfer et al. (2017) to implement sustainable tourism, in conjunction with conservation objectives, it is required to join particular conditions such as: investment security, a well-developed tourism market, and a convergence between tourism and conservation activities. ...
Article
Full-text available
The main objective of this work is to determine the landscape planning alternatives of the populations that have a direct relationship with the mangrove ecosystems (Bunche community). The theoretical foundation is the Geo-ecology of landscapes (GEL). The phases that were fulfilled are: i) characterization of the physical and natural landscape; ii) characterization of the socio-cultural landscape by participatory techniques, and secondary information. The participatory techniques were: Workshops, Social mapping and semi-structured interviews. iii) Integrate the information collected from the landscapes: physical, natural, social and cultural; in order to determine the most appropriate and sustainable management alternatives in the community. Social perception was the main information to raise the conclusive alternatives. The population of Bunche has unfavorable socioeconomic figures, highlighting that almost the entire population lives in poverty due to unsatisfied basic needs. The constant threat and destruction of mangroves (mostly blame shrimp) is the main perception of the population; as well as his manifest desire to reverse this situation. The initial characterization resulted in 10 landscapes, where the social and natural component interact. The climate present in the population is mainly rain, with two ecosystems: Forests of the equatorial Chocó and the mangroves of the equatorial Chocó. The sustainable planning of the territory must start from: sustainable tourism and agroecology. It is also possible to implement mangrove recovery processes with the support of the community. El objetivo principal de este trabajo es el de determinar las alternativas de planificación de los paisajes, de las poblaciones que tienen una relación directa con los ecosistemas de manglar (comunidad de Bunche). El fundamento teórico es la Geo-ecología de los paisajes (GEP). Las fases que se cumplieron son: i) caracterización del paisaje físico y natural; ii) caracterización del paisaje socio cultural por técnicas participativas, e información secundaria. Las técnicas participativas fueron: Talleres, Cartografía social y entrevistas semi estructuradas. iii) Integrar la información recolectada de los paisajes: físicos, naturales, sociales y culturales; a fin de determinar las alternativas de ordenamiento más adecuadas y sostenibles en la comunidad. La percepción social fue la principal información para plantear las alternativas concluyentes. La población de Bunche presenta cifras socio económicas desfavorables, destacándose que casi la totalidad de la población vive en condición de pobreza por Necesidades básicas insatisfechas. La constante amenaza y destrucción de los manglares (en su mayoría culpan a las camaroneras) es la principal percepción de la población; así como su manifiesto deseo de revertir esta situación. La caracterización inicial dio como resultado 10 paisajes, en donde interactúan el componente social y natural. El clima presente en la población es principalmente pluvial, contando con dos ecosistemas: Bosques del Chocó ecuatorial y los Manglares del Chocó ecuatorial. La planificación sostenible del territorio debe partir desde: el turismo sostenible y la agroecología. También es posible implementar procesos de recuperación de los manglares con el apoyo de la comunidad. Palabras Claves: Geo-ecología de los paisajes. Planificación del paisaje; Cartografía social; Investigación participativa.
... This suggests that the funding need is not so much for new innovative funding mechanisms, but towards thinking "innovation" more broadly [42]. Are we ready for a transformational change in Natural Resource Management that sees land mangers as sellers of a range of desired services for prices that will induce the action? ...
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Environmental services of biodiversity, clean water, etc., have been considered byproducts of farming and grazing, but population pressures and a move from rural to peri-urban areas are changing land use practices, reducing these services and increasing land degradation. A range of ecosystem markets have been reversing this damage, but these are not widely institutionalized, so land managers do not see them as “real” in the way they do for traditional food and fiber products. There are difficulties defining and monitoring non-food/fiber ecosystem services so they can be reliably marketed, and those markets that do operate usually do so in a piecemeal single product way in the interest of simplicity for the buyer, and seldom adequately regulate or compensate land managers for non-market benefits. New profitable uses of degraded water and regenerating land are emerging, but they require technology transfer or supply chain development to facilitate adoption. There is a need for a transformational change in the way land and water are used to promote a broader approach, so environmental services become a mainstream activity for land managers. A far-sighted Philanthropist is required to support an International institution to take up the challenge of institutionalizing such a ‘brokerage’ system to operate globally.
... Others believe it is important to maintain a balance between the resources flowing through CTFs and other more traditional resources managed by non-CTF projects (CFA (Conservation Finance Alliance) 2014). Others even suggest that CTFs develop more integrated approaches to ecosystems, via a landscape approach (Berghöfer et al. 2017). At present, however, these initiatives appear to be relatively marginal. ...
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This article explores the unknown role of Conservation Trust Funds (CTF) through a review of the literature (scientific and technical) and a database of 89 CTF worldwide. It is based on the observation that there is little interest in the scientific literature for this instrument, although it is very well documented and used by conservation actors (NGOs, donors, governments). In the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, protected areas are the main instrument to achieve the SDGs 14 (Life below water) and 15 (Life on land). Then, sustaining protected areas through the use of CTF is particularly relevant to ‘the mobilization of financial resources from all sources’ (Targets 15.A and 15.B). The objective of the article is to provide an analysis of the literature and a typology of the different CTFs. We propose a mapping of the different CTFs around the world. Finally, we discuss the main risks associated with the use of this tool, particularly with regard to its dependence on stock market fluctuations.
... The first has been to reduce costs and the second is to increase so -called own revenues or self-generated revenue (primarily from entrance fees and tourism concessions and services such as accommodation, tours and restaurants). For the latter, an important consideration is whether these increased revenues can be retained, earmarked and reinvested in conservation activities (Emerton et al., 2006;Berghöfer et al., 2017). MAs have had varying degrees of success with increasing selfgenerated revenues. ...
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