May 11, 2007
New assessments found that Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) investments have helped build civil society as an effective force for long-term biodiversity conservation in six more of the world’s most threatened regions.
The reports summarize five years of CEPF investment in the Atlantic Forest; Cape Floristic Region; Philippines; Sundaland; Mesoamerica; and Tumbes-Chocó-Magdalena biodiversity hotspots, where CEPF began awarding grants in 2002.
CEPF’s unique investment approach demonstrated successes in protected area networks, community stewardship, and building conservation into development planning, among other areas.
Protected areas remain the critical foundation of biodiversity conservation worldwide and have been a major focal area for CEPF. Project portfolios have supported the creation or expansion, consolidation, and improved planning and management of protected area networks based on the identification of key biodiversity areas and biodiversity conservation corridors.
As of March 2007, CEPF-supported civil society groups have contributed to the creation or expansion of 862,288 hectares of globally significant biodiversity in these hotspots, bringing the protected areas total to 10.6 million hectares across all portfolios.
The CEPF regional portfolios reflect a growing appreciation that effective conservation requires working with the people in and around protected areas and critical ecosystems who rely on and sometimes manage critical biodiversity resources.
All of the portfolios have supported community stewardship of biodiversity through improved use and management of natural resources, the reduction or elimination of practices harmful to biodiversity, and the development and adoption of a variety of alternative livelihood opportunities.
CEPF support has also played an influential role in shaping national and municipal policies in favor of biodiversity conservation across many hotspots. Mobilizing civil society to help strengthen the enabling environment for conservation has been a major focus.
A key approach has been to strengthen protection of critical biological corridors that link key biodiversity areas within a multiple-use landscape through improved planning and other activities that mainstream conservation into production landscapes, including collaboration with the private sector and developing supportive policy and legislative frameworks.
The assessments also discuss lessons learned in five years of investment and the challenges that lie ahead for these regions. The information in the reports comes from CEPF project monitoring, grantee experiences, and stakeholder workshops held in each region in early 2007.
Read the assessments:
Reports from three previously assessed regions are also available online: