Supporting Conservation Finance at a Landscape Level
CFN has undertaken a new initiative to bring conservation finance technical assistance to the Sentinel Landscapes. The Sentinel Landscapes partnership brings the Department of Defense (DoD), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Department of the Interior (DOI) together with a coalition of other federal agencies, state agencies, local and private partners to coordinate permanent protection and sustainable management practices in priority landscapes. Partners vary by landscape but can include land trusts and other NGOs, city government, conservation districts, zoos, hunting associations, farmers and ranchers, and universities working towards conservation goals decided on by the partnership.
Sentinel Landscapes were first envisioned and enabled by the Department of Defense’s Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration (REPI) Program. Their effort was motivated by a core belief that cross-agency collaboration in partnership with local stakeholders would yield greater, most cost-effective conservation outcomes for all involved.
CFN’s Work with Sentinel Landscapes
CFN created the below resources to help Sentinel Landscape partners think creatively on how they can achieve their land conservation goals by tapping into new partnerships and sources of financing. We have also aggregated relevant resources from our close partners. Some of these resources cover strategies, case studies, and new opportunities for conservation finance that are applicable in all landscapes – not those exclusively with a defense interest. CFN will continue to update this page with further resources and opportunities related to or created through this program work.
For more information on this program, please contact CFN Program Associate for Strategic Initiatives Michele Haynes.
CFN Original Resources
The goal of this primer is to help practitioners think creatively on how they can finance land conservation and restoration beyond simple land protection. This article discusses strategies outside of traditional land conservation easement and acquisition models and the conservation goals they support.
A two-part webinar on the basics of conservation finance. Reggie Hall with The Conservation Fund and Leigh Whelpton with CFN discuss known sources of conservation funding and financing along with innovative strategies for blending financing. Case studies feature projects that have successfully and creatively used REPI funding.
A Q&A with Kari Cohen, branch chief at the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, about the Alternative Funding Arrangement (AFA) provision of their Regional Conservation Partnership Program. This conversation highlights how increased flexibility provided by the AFA can allow partners to take the lead in crafting partnerships and project financing structures.
CFN interviews Nathalie Woolworth, the conservation finance program manager at the United States Forest Service (USFS), about their Innovative Finance for National Forests grant program. This Q&A discusses the development of conservation finance programs at USFS and the opportunity to deploy investor-driven capital in the National Forest system.
This report, produced by the Environmental Policy and Innovation Center (EPIC), discusses the challenges and opportunities of aligning conservation goals with military mission. EPIC presents five strategic recommendations that conservation practitioners can take in the next ten years and highlights what work has already been done with DoD as a key partner, in particular the Sentinel Landscapes program.