Ecosystem Profile: Indochina

The Ecosystem Profile
The ecosystem profile presents an overview of Indochina in terms of its biodiversity conservation importance, major threats to and root causes of biodiversity loss, socioeconomic context, and current conservation investments. It provides a suite of measurable conservation outcomes, identifies funding gaps, and opportunities for investment and thus identifies the niche where CEPF investment can provide the greatest incremental value.

The ecosystem profile contains a 5-year investment strategy for CEPF in the region. This investment strategy comprises a series of strategic funding opportunities, termed strategic directions, broken down into a number of investment priorities outlining the types of activities that will be eligible for CEPF funding. Civil society organizations or individuals may propose projects that will help implement the strategy by fitting into at least one of the strategic directions. The ecosystem profile does not include specific project concepts, as civil society groups will develop these as part of their applications for CEPF grant funding. Applicants are required to prepare detailed proposals identifying and describing the interventions and performance indicators that will be used to evaluate the success of the project.

The ecosystem profile for Indochina was developed through a process of consultation and desk study coordinated by BirdLife International in collaboration with the Bird Conservation Society of Thailand (BCST), Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden (KFBG), and the WWF Cambodia Program with the technical support of the Center for Applied Biodiversity Science (CABS) at CI. More than 170 stakeholders from civil society, government, and donor institutions were consulted during the preparation of the ecosystem profile.

During the preparation process, data on biodiversity, ocioeconomic and institutional context, and ongoing and planned conservation investments in the five countries in the region were compiled and synthesized by the ecosystem profile team, with support from CABS, then reviewed at a series of expert roundtables. The first expert roundtable was held in Vientiane, Lao P.D.R.; the second was held in Hanoi, Vietnam; the third was held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia; and the fourth was held in Bangkok, Thailand. Due to the outbreak of the SARS virus at the time, no expert roundtable was held in southern China but, instead, stakeholders were consulted individually. The expert roundtables also provided an opportunity for stakeholders to propose biological and thematic priorities for CEPF investment. Moreover, the expert roundtables raised the profile of CEPF in the region and generated support for the CEPF investment strategy among stakeholders. Subsequent to the expert roundtables, the draft biological and thematic priorities for CEPF investment were reviewed by the CEPF Working Group comprised of technical staff from each of the CEPF donor partner organizations and further revised based upon its recommendations.

The biological basis for CEPF investment in Indochina will be conservation outcomes: the quantifiable set of species, sites, and biodiversity conservation corridors that must be conserved to curb biodiversity loss globally. Conservation outcomes present quantitative and justifiable targets against which the success of conservation investments can be measured. The conservation outcomes for the region comprise extinctions avoided (species outcomes), areas protected (site outcomes), and corridors created (corridor outcomes). As CEPF alone cannot achieve all of the conservation outcomes in the region, a set of priority species, sites, and corridors were selected on the basis of biological importance, urgency for conservation action, and opportunity for additional conservation investment to ensure that CEPF investments complement other conservation investments and make the maximum contribution to global biodiversity conservation.

During the preparation process, 492 species outcomes, 362 site outcomes, and 53 corridor outcomes were defined for Indochina. Through consultation with stakeholders and the CEPF donor partners, these biological priorities were further refined to 67 priority species, 28 priority sites, and two priority corridors. In addition, the thematic priorities for CEPF investment were formulated as investment priorities, grouped into four strategic directions.

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