In Ghana, fertile forests have attracted poaching and razing. Now they're attracting a coalition that aims to restore forests and empower female farmers. Leaders aim for the restoration of 200,000 hectares of off-reserve savannah forests and woodlands by placing them under Community Resource Management Areas (CREMA). These target 100,000 hectares of degraded shea parklands and the creation of 25,500 hectares of modified forest in now severely degraded reserves.
the southeast corner of Georgia, bisected by Interstate 95, sits the county of Camden. One side of the county features a complex coastline highlighted by the winding East River and Satilla Rivers and their tributaries. The Cumberland barrier island sits atop these river mouths dampening the wave action from the Atlantic. The result is a mosaic of pristine marshland and tidal creeks eventually giving way to maritime forests, swamp forests, and pine flats. It's also a testament to the crux of collaboration and conservation.
How does a farmer with no desire to keep growing crops become a catalyst for financial value and land preservation? The Washington Farmland Trust worked with a farmer at the end of his career to craft a financial package that would keep his land from developers, sustain ecosystem services, and set forth a model for generating impact-investment participation in land preservation around Seattle.
*It should be noted that with the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, many conservation banks along with other conservation projects are facing uncertain futures because the pandemic has put a stress on current and future funding. For many years, conservationists, landowners, and developers have met at crossroads when handling cases of endangered species with habitats on private lands. Conservationists sought to ensure the protection of the habitat, landowners hoped to maximize land value and avoid land-use restrictions under the Endangered Species Act, and developers sought to develop land without paying complicated and large mitigation sums. The alleviation to these conflicts of interest...
What makes efforts to preserve land harmonize with efforts to promote commerce? In this article, we review several examples. Entrepreneurs learn to bolster terrain for hikers (who drink beer), historically sensitive consumers, and fellow merchants. These examples show how creative approaches to promoting conservation and community-based development can yield ongoing benefits.
Forest carbon offset companies see a source of credit, and value, in small forest owners. These owners, in turn, see offsets as a way to sustain their assets. What does this emerging field need to normalize about valuation, verification and communication to make deeper financial and ecological impact?
In the words of the great agricultural philosopher Liza Minnelli, “Money makes the world go round.” Most stakeholders RAI interviewed across agricultural supply chains, especially farmers, want to grow crops and raise livestock in a sustainable way. Yet this desire to minimize environmental harm is not feasible if it creates a financially unsustainable operation. Farming profitability is essential for affordable food production, long-term solvency, and accessible financing.
The traditional landscape of farmland ownership and financing in the United States thwarts the adoption of regenerative agriculture. First, farmland is expensive. Farm real estate prices have doubled in the last decade. But models have emerged to power regenerative practices forward. These include concessionary capital, financing from real estate investment trusts, and dollars from larger investors who treat farmland as a hedge to other asset classes.