GEF Private Areas – Conserving biodiversity and rural landscapes
In 2010, the Convention on Biological Diversity established 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets (CBD 2010). Many of these targets depend on actions that go beyond establishing formal protected areas under the responsibility of governments, civil society or indigenous people. Brazil is one of the most biodiverse countries and has one of the highest rates of carbon sequestration in the world, which gives it a crucial role on biodiversity conservation and the provision of ecosystem services. As approximately 53% of the remnant native vegetation cover in Brazil is in private lands, the country has the potential to lead initiatives of conversation and sustainable management in such areas, potentially assisting others to achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.
Thus, in order to increase sustainable management, contribute to the conservation of this wealth and to the provision of ecosystem services in private areas in Brazil, the International Institute for Sustainability (IIS ) and the Ministry of the Environment (MMA), sponsored by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and support from the UN Environment Program, launched the Project GEF Private Areas – Conserving Biodiversity and Rural Landscapes.
The project is divided into three components, listed below with their specific benefits:
The first is the implementation of pilot areas in the Mata Atlântica and Cerrado biomes. This component aims to reduce landscape fragmentation in productive areas, increase habitat supply to endangered species, and develop incentive schemes for conservation. The main benefits include increased income for rural landowners, increasing their knowledge of integrated property management, better adaptation of rural landowners to the Native Vegetation Protection Act (LPVN), reducing the cost of environmental regularization through identification of areas with natural regeneration potential and the strengthening of sustainable extractivism.
The second component aims to establish an agreement with forest sector companies to improve the conservation of biodiversity and the recovery of native vegetation in their areas. Some of the advantages would be raising awareness regarding the importance of the forest sector’s areas for the conservation of biodiversity and the improvement in decision-making processes in priority areas for recovery that are managed by forest sector companies.
The third component of the project has the objective of improving government capacities to incorporate the conservation value of private areas into public policies. The benefits are improved procedures for sustainable management of native vegetation incorporating conservation value in private areas and increasing knowledge of stakeholders and decision makers on the use of maps (spatial database) that indicate the value of conservation of private areas.
The project will last for 60 months (ends in April 2023).