The systematic accounting of a country’s natural wealth and the goods and services the ecosystem offer, provides opportunities to generate information and better understand the natural environment’s contribution to the economy. This on the other hand offer support policies and decision in the pursuit of sustainable development taking into account environmental economic and socio-political dimensions.
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Whilst the Earth’s diversity of species and habitats must be preserved first and foremost for their intrinsic value, the solution (from a socio-economic perspective) lies in recognizing and valuing nature for the ecological services it provides – upon which societies and economies are built. Nature, or “Natural Capital” – biodiversity, ecosystems and ecosystem services – must be preserved and restored as the foundation of human societies and economies.
UNDP and the Government of Seychelles are implementing an ambitious conservation programme in Seychelles, funded primarily by the GEF with help from other partners. Two projects of a very specific nature stand out. A new UNDP-GEF protected area finance project aims to improve the financial sustainability and strategic cohesion of Seychelles’ protected area system, while also dealing with emerging threats and risks to biodiversity in a shifting national economic environment.
By organising and presenting existing biophysical, social and economic data, and applying acknowledged economic valuation methods in an accounting framework, we offer a tool to policy makers that incorporates values of select ecosystem assets and services that is consistent with official macroeconomic indicators and statistics. In producing a structured and familiar accounting based product, we envisage greater uptake and consideration of environmental data in the policy decision making process.
Nyungwe National Park is globally recognized for its conservation value as the largest protected mountain forest block remaining in east and central Africa. It is also a major catchment for the nation of Rwanda, providing most of its water for drinking, manufacturing), and hydro-electricity generation. WCS has been working with the Government of Rwanda to:
COMACO works with over 80,000 households in Zambia's Luangwa Valley and Eastern Province. It provides them with agricultural inputs (e.g. seeds, tools), training in conservation farming techniques, commodity transport and processing, and access to wholesale and retail markets under COMACO's "It's Wild" brand. Households achieve improved food security, increased incomes, and are incentivized through conditional price premiums and extensions assistance to conserve soils, water, forests, and wildlife.