Encompassing more than 2 million square kilometers of tropical Asia, Indo-Burma is one of the most threatened of Earth’s 34 biodiversity hotspots. Only about 5 percent of its natural habitats remain in relatively pristine condition.
The combination of economic development and an increasing human population is creating unprecedented pressures on the region's natural resources. Overexploitation has reached critical levels in many areas, and habitat loss is also pervasive.
The council of donors that governs the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) approved a $9.5-million, 5-year investment strategy for the Indochina region of this hotspot in April 2007. The Indochina region includes Cambodia, Lao P.D.R., Thailand, and Vietnam, as well as parts of southern China.
CEPF investment in this region will begin with the selection of a regional implementation team.
Conservation of two large landscapes—the Northern Highlands Limestone, and Mekong River and Major Tributaries biodiversity conservation corridors—and 28 key biodiversity areas within them will be emphasized. Sixty-seven animal species and all 248 globally threatened plant species will also be priorities for investment.
CEPF investments in this region will be guided by four strategic directions. Each project must be linked to one of the strategic directions to be approved for funding:
- Safeguard priority globally threatened species in Indochina by mitigating major threats
- Develop innovative, locally led approaches to site-based conservation at 28 key biodiversity areas
- Engage key actors in reconciling biodiversity conservation and development objectives, with a particular emphasis on the Northern Limestone Highlands and Mekong River and its major tributaries
- Provide strategic leadership and effective coordination of CEPF investment through a regional implementation team
A full description of these strategic directions and related investment priorities can be found in the ecosystem profile for this region.Indo-Burma
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