Monday, November 21, 2011

Payments for ecosystem services as a framework for community-based conservation

Payments for ecosystem services (PES) are an increasingly promoted approach to conservation. They seek to develop financial mechanisms that create economic incentives for the maintenance of ecosystems and associated biodiversity by rewarding those who are responsible for provision of ecological services. However, there are few cases in which such schemes have been used as a strategy for conserving wildlife in developing countries and very few operational examples of such schemes of any sort in sub-Saharan Africa. Wider adaptation of payments for ecosystem services approaches to settings where sustaining wildlife populations depends on local stewardship may help address current challenges facing conservation outside state-protected areas in savannah ecosystems in sub-Saharan Africa and other parts of the world.

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