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New York Stock Exchange

New York Stock Exchange / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Investment Advisors Weigh In on Barriers to Conservation in Portfolios

This two-part article series explores the challenges of and opportunities for incorporating conservation finance into traditional investment portfolios. In Part 1, various current and former investment advisors with deep knowledge of impact finance discuss the challenges of integrating conservation investments into traditional investment portfolios.
Pensacola, Florida

The Gulf of Mexico on the Pensacola, Florida coast / Capt_tain Tom / CC BY 2.0

Building Demand in US Water Quality Trading Markets

Environmental credit trading programs have gained traction for pollutants like carbon emissions, at least in concept. Is water quality trading the next frontier? The mechanism offers the possibility of more flexible and cost-effective water quality control, but in contrast to some environmental credits, markets have struggled to gain momentum.
A Hawaiian monk seal amid marine pollution

Discarded fishing gear surrounds a Hawaiian monk seal / National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminstration

Financing the Battle Against Marine Plastic Pollution

Experts predict that, by weight, there will be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans by 2050. A 2016 report from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation estimates that at least 8 million tons of plastic end up in the ocean each year. With the health of ocean ecosystems threatened by marine plastic pollution, what opportunities are there for private capital to become part of the solution?
Delaware farm

Farm in Georgetown, Delaware / Michele Dorsey Walfred / CC BY-SA 2.0

Revolving Water Fund Pilots PFS Approach for Water Quality Improvements

The traditional water fund model, which has been used around the world, pools philanthropic and donor capital to support upstream restorations. The Revolving Water Fund innovates on this model by also aiming to quantify the pollution reductions from these restoration activities, then packaging and selling the reductions to municipalities in the watershed seeking to cost-effectively comply with water quality standards enforced under the Clean Water Act.
Soy farm in Brazil

Soy farm in Brazil / Michael Swan / CC BY-ND 2.0

How Guaranteed Offtake Can Drive Sustainable Agriculture

As food companies look to lower supply chain risk and reduce their ecological footprint, new strategies are emerging to increase adoption of sustainability practices among farmers. Several companies have begun using long-term contracts — purchase agreements guaranteeing offtake beyond an annual time horizon — to stabilize costs and allow both grower and buyer to plan further into the future.
Wayne National Forest

Wayne National Forest in Ohio / Dan Keck

Pay-for-Success Financing

Traditionally, conservation efforts raise funding for projects and actions in the hope that those activities will result in desired outcomes. This Toolkit explores Pay-for-success financing, an alternative approach. This model ties funding for conservation to project outcomes, incentivizing the achievement of objectives and shifting risk away from public agencies and conservation organizations that implement on-the-ground work.
Tools for Financing Conservation
USDA-funded water project in Oklahoma

Conservation Partnerships with Water Utilities

This article by Eve Boyce and Marcy Lyman is part of the Conservation Finance Network Toolkit, a resource designed for professionals who want to learn or communicate about the industry. In an increasing number of communities across the country, utilities are working with conservation groups to ensure the ecosystem services provided by healthy watersheds are protected and maintained. This strategy doesn’t simply provide cost savings to water companies. It can also create a new source of funding and constituencies for land conservation.
Larch trees in forest

Ballot Measures

This article by Nathalie Woolworth and Hazel Wong is part of the Conservation Finance Network Toolkit, a resource designed for professionals who want to learn or communicate about the industry. Ballot measures, also known as initiatives or propositions, are instruments of direct democracy that allow voters to directly shape public policy in the voting booth.