Climate and Nature

Be inspired by these climate finance community success stories

A jaguar cat, illustrating how climate finance helps boost biodiversity

Community-focused climate finance can help boost biodiversity. Image: Uriel Soberanes on Unsplash

Metolo A. Foyet
Founding Curator and Curator, Global Shapers Hubs Gainesville, Florida
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Climate and Nature

  • Community-Based Natural Resource Management public/private partnerships can have a positive impact on climate finance.
  • By aligning conservation efforts with economic incentives and leveraging climate finance opportunities, they demonstrate their potential to address major environmental challenges.
  • By integrating community-based approaches and public-private collaborations into climate finance strategies, we can better address the challenges of climate change.

Several successful examples of Community-Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) public/private partnerships worldwide have shown a proven impact on climate finance. These initiatives showcase how collaborative efforts between local communities, governments and private sector partners can yield positive outcomes for sustainable resource management and development, biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation, while attracting climate finance. By aligning conservation efforts with economic incentives and leveraging climate finance opportunities, these initiatives demonstrate the potential of CBNRM public/private partnerships in addressing global environmental challenges.

The Caiman Ecological Refuge in Brazil is a CBNRM public/private partnership for wetland and wildlife conservation, including jaguars. The partnership involves private investors, conservation groups and local communities. Income from ecotourism supports monitoring, habitat restoration and community development. The refuge's success has attracted private sector and international funds, contributing to climate finance aimed at preserving wetland ecosystems and their associated biodiversity.

In Nigeria and Benin, the Shea Value Chain and PACOFIDE projects promote sustainable production of shea nut, cashew nut, honey, mango, vegetables, meat and other wild products, benefiting communities and combating climate change. The Shea Value Chain supports agroforestry and increases tree cover and carbon sequestration, while empowering women in shea nut processing. Partnerships with private firms in the cosmetics and food industries create market opportunities, stimulate economic growth, and attract climate finance for sustainable supply chains.

Image: Metolo Foyet

Cambodia’s Tmatboey Community-Owned Ecotourism initiative shows how ecotourism aids biodiversity conservation and climate finance. Local communities and private operators protect endangered birds and offer responsible ecotourism. Ecotourism income backs community development, incentivizing conservation and drawing climate finance through sustainable tourism.

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The Mpingo Conservation and Development Initiative in Tanzania promotes sustainable forest management via a CBNRM public/private partnership. It collaborates with communities to protect the endangered Mpingo tree (African Blackwood), providing economic and ecological benefits. By sustainably harvesting and trading Mpingo timber, communities earn income while conserving forests. This initiative attracts private investments, international partnerships and carbon financing through offset projects, showcasing community-driven conservation's ability to draw climate finance. The same approach is applied to the mopane tree in Namibia, where conservancies, community forests and fisheries reserves serve as examples of CBNRM public/private partnerships.

A Namibian woman walks to harvest mopane tree fruits in her community. Image: Metolo Foyet

The Yaeda Valley Community-Led Conservation Initiative in Tanzania unites local communities to protect wildlife habitats, including Hadza ancestral lands, via a CBNRM public/private partnership. Private sector partners aid conservation and community activities. Sustainable resource harvesting, such as honey and wild fruits, provides income and ecological balance. Carbon offset projects attract climate finance, benefiting habitat conservation and emissions reduction.

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The Alto Mayo Conservation Initiative in Peru is a partnership involving the government, local communities and private organizations, such as Starbucks. It conserves the Alto Mayo Protected Forest and promotes sustainable coffee farming. Shade-grown coffee aids climate mitigation by sequestering carbon and curbing deforestation emissions. Private sector participation via coffee agreements offers financial incentives for sustainable land use, benefiting communities and climate resilience.

The Katingan Mentaya Project in Indonesia is a notable CBNRM public/private partnership in peatland areas. It combats deforestation and peatland degradation, which are major carbon emission sources. Local communities adopt sustainable land management, restoring peatlands and boosting carbon sequestration. Its carbon offset projects attract climate finance by selling verified credits to companies and governments for emissions offsetting.

The Northern Rangelands Trust and Mara Naboisho in Kenya are successful CBNRM public/private partnerships operating in community-owned conservancies. They empower local communities to sustainably manage and benefit from wildlife resources, including iconic species. The Northern Rangelands Trust secures private sector support for anti-poaching, wildlife monitoring and habitat restoration; and it utilizes REDD+ carbon financing to conserve forests and wildlife habitats, setting an example for wildlife-related climate finance. Mara Naboisho collaborates with Maasai landowners, tourism operators and conservation groups. Ecotourism income is shared with local communities to encourage their involvement in wildlife protection. This partnership showcases how responsible tourism supports wildlife conservation, benefits local communities and draws climate finance through sustainable tourism.

Overcoming challenges and ensuring sustainability

In many cases, the success of CBNRM initiatives is influenced by factors such as access to finance and secure land rights. Without access to money or the ability to use their lands as collateral, communities may face significant challenges in implementing CBNRM projects and benefiting from them fully. A number of things can be done to prevent this:

• Potential barriers, such as conflicting interests, governance issues and regulatory complexities and risks in establishing and maintaining CBNRM public/private partnerships for climate financing should be addressed.

• Strategies to overcome these challenges must be executed, including transparency, stakeholder engagement and capacity building; ensuring social and environmental safeguards and responsible and ethical investments that do not exacerbate inequalities or harm local communities and ecosystems.

• The CBNRM public/private partnerships must be effectively promoted and marketed.

• The importance of collaboration between governments, businesses and communities to address climate change effectively must be reinforced.

• It is necessary to build the capacity of key areas (like southern Africa) in developing CBNRM public/private partnerships.

• Further research and action must be encouraged.

• New opportunities and ways to overcome challenges in implementing CBNRM public/private partnerships for climate financing must be explored.

• Mechanisms for measuring and evaluating the impact of CBNRM public/private partnerships on climate finance and environmental outcomes must be discussed. For example, carbon credit sales to private buyers can fund conservation efforts through climate finance to support ongoing conservation activities.

From a policy/legal framework perspective we must:

• Advocate for supportive policies and regulations that encourage and facilitate CBNRM public/private partnerships.

• Advocate for inclusive and adaptive policies that accommodate the needs of diverse stakeholders.

• Discuss the importance of aligning government policies and incentives to attract private sector participation.

• Highlight successful policy frameworks from different regions that have fostered effective CBNRM public/private partnerships.

From a partnerships/collaboration angle we must:

• Encourage stakeholders to proactively seek out collaboration opportunities.

• Explore potential partnership models, such as with NGOs, international organizations and academia.

• Stress the significance of inclusive and participatory decision-making involving local communities in partnership development.

• Consider Green Bonds and Climate Funds, as CBNRM is climate friendly.

In conclusion, the link between climate financing, CBNRM and public/private partnerships lies in their potential to collaborate and reinforce each other to achieve sustainable and climate-resilient development. By integrating community-based approaches and public-private collaborations into climate finance strategies, we can better address the challenges of climate change while fostering environmental stewardship and inclusive development. There is now, more than ever, an urgent call for collective action and commitment to support CBNRM public/private partnerships as a powerful tool in combating climate change and protecting our planet.

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