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EditPhoto Title:Center for Environment and Peace
EditPhoto Description:Partnering with governments, institutions and communities to put better policies and resources in place — to maintain healthy ecosystems for the shared benefit of all people
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EditImage Description:Mountain stream in a tropical rain forest.
EditPhoto Credit:© SZE FEI WONG
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Our lives are inextricably linked to the health of our planet. Conflicts over scarce and degraded natural resouces are widespread. Conservation International's Center for Environment and Peace (CEP) was created to help address these conflicts.


We build upon CI's 27 years of scientific knowledge, practical experience and technical and financing expertise to form partnerships with governments, businesses and communities. Together, we develop innovative strategies to better protect ecosystems, and we influence policy and investment decisions to implement these strategies on the ground. And we share best practices with decision-makers to increase our impact on a global scale.​



Our role

With a focus on key nations and international institutions, we are taking a comprehensive approach to integrating the protection of nature into policies. We are also investing to protect healthy ecosystems and the many benefits they provide that are essential to human well-being —​ from continual access to food, water and other natural resources to political stability and economic success.

The good news is that there is a growing recognition by many nations and institutions of the direct connection between “natural capital” and economic and national security interests, as well as the role of healthy ecosystems in ensuring sustained, equitable improvements in human well-being and social stability.

As CEP continues to take shape, it is increasingly influencing global conservation policies, priorities and public funding, and helping to amplify CI’s and our partners’ results. Specifically, we help create better policies, more funding and greater amplification by helping decision-makers better understand and value the role that nature plays in creating healthy, prosperous societies.

The work of CEP is powered by the partnerships we form, from the grassroots level through our work with indigenous peoples' organizations to the key institutions that have the influence to catalyze a global shift to truly sustainable development. These “global agents of change” include institutions such as the World Bank, the Global Environment Facility, the g​​overnments of the United States and of Japan, and the European Union.


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EditQuote Text (Do not add quotation marks):Peace, development and environmental protection are interdependent and indivisible.
EditQuote Attribution:Rio Declaration, Principle 25 (1992)
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CI is a trusted advisor

We act as a trusted advisor to local, national and global decision-makers, giving them the data, tools, models, connections and counsel they need to better protect healthy ecosystems at a large scale.

We recommend policy and investment solutions that are informed by sound science, local understanding and exploratory projects that are tested on the ground.

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EditImage Alt Text:Harrison and Russ at CI booth at the 2010 U.N. CBD conference in Nagoya, Japan. © Conservation International/photo by Russell A. Mittermeier
EditTitle:Convention on Biological Diversity
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EditText:In 2010, in Nagoya, Japan, 193 countries meeting for the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) agreed on 20 targets to reduce global pressures on our natural world. Known as the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, these goals cover everything from avoiding extinctions of threatened species, to reducing subsidies that are harmful to the environment, to protecting 17% of the Earth’s land and 10% of its seas by 2020. Although countries have begun planning ways to meet these targets, much more rapid progress is needed. Only about 13% of land and 1.6% of our oceans currently lie within protected areas, and half of nature’s most important sites remain unprotected.

One of the major challenges to achieving these targets is a lack of understanding of how much it will cost countries to reach them. CI-Ecuador, the Moore Center and CEP partnered on a study to determine the costs of achieving the 20 targets in Ecuador, under a variety of different scenarios. This study is one of the only robust bottom-up estimates available as a data point for the ongoing negotiations on financing targets for biodiversity. The resulting report of this study is an official CBD document and is now available to other countries as an example of both the projected cost in one country, and how to determine the costs of achieving the Aichi Targets at the national level.
EditPhoto Credit:© Conservation International/photo by Russell A. Mittermeier
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CI convenes and builds relationships

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We convene and build relationships with – and between – communities, businesses, multilateral and bilateral institutions and governments to help them understand how better policies and more public and private investments can create the right incentives for better management of natural resources.

 

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EditSection Title:The Global Environment Facility
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EditImage Description: Atuherie Shallon and Tomusherure Kofudance cook potatoes at the family's farm along the Park boundary
EditText: The Global Environment Facility (GEF) is the largest public fund for the environment globally. It has provided billions of US dollars in grants to large programs related to biodiversity, climate change, international waters, land degradation, the ozone layer, and persistent organic pollutants. In 2013, after a rigorous two-year application process, CI was formally accredited as a GEF Project Agency. By functioning as a Project Agency, CI is among the first non-governmental organizations to partner directly with the GEF, without going through a United Nations Agency or a multilateral development bank. With this accreditation, CI is working directly with the GEF to help countries prepare for and implement game-changing projects in the near future.
READ MORE: CI: An Agency of the Global Environment Facility
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EditPhoto Credit:© Benjamin Drummond
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CI promotes the rights of communities

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We promote the rights, priorities and needs of local people and communities so that national and global decision-makers more strongly consider how global policies and investments affect everyday lives.


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EditSection Title:Environment and gender
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EditImage Description: Mothers and children from the Konashen Community-Owned Conservation Area in the Konashen Indigenous District of Southern Guyana.
EditText: In 2013, we participated in a partnership between CI, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the Swiss Agency for International Development to launch the first-ever Environment and Gender Index. The Index monitors gender equality and women’s empowerment in the environmental arena. The Index ranks 72 countries on how they are translating gender and environment mandates into national policy and planning. The strongest performers are Iceland, the Netherlands and Norway. The lowest rankings went to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Yemen and Mauritania. The United States ranked 14 out of 72. The Environment and Gender Index was launched on November 19 at the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties in Warsaw.

The Environment and Gender Index is part of CI’s larger new program on gender. Activities include trainings on gender concepts and building skills to successfully integrate gender dynamics into our conservation work, and developing gender-integration tools for staff to use when designing, implementing, and evaluating conservation projects.

In addition to internal capacity building, CEP supports efforts to empower indigenous and rural women in East Africa and Latin America. In October, CI, along with the Ford Foundation, hosted a Strategic Discussion about women and the environment in Nairobi. Outcomes from this event will be used to inform and develop a small grantmaking program in East Africa.
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EditSection Title:Free, Prior and Informed Consent
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EditImage Description: Kanyinke Sena chairs the 12th Session of the U.N. Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. He is the first African to serve in this capacity. An Ogiek Kenya, he is also a member of CI’s Indigenous Advisory Group.
EditText: We recently completed guidelines for CI on Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC). FPIC is a framework for ensuring that the rights of indigenous peoples are guaranteed in any decision that may affect their lands, territories or livelihoods. It ensures that they have the right to give or withhold their consent to these activities without fear of reprisal or coercion, in a timeframe suited to their own culture and with the resources to make informed decisions. FPIC gives indigenous peoples the freedom to determine their own development path. This freedom, when recognized, supports CI’s mission of empowering societies to responsibly and sustainably care for nature.
READ MORE: Free, Prior and Informed Consent in Context
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EditSection Title:CI’s Indigenous Advisory Group Discusses Indigenous Rights
EditSection Description:Since 2009, the Indigenous Advisory Group has been providing advice and feedback to CI on issues related to indigenous rights, climate change and forest conservation issues. Learn more about the individual members as they discuss their personal and professional experiences working on rights in their own countries.
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            EditSection Title:Supporting human health
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            EditImage Description: Waterfall in Madagascar
            EditText: Diseases related to contaminated water kill nearly 2 million people, every single year. CI works with any and all comers who will help us turn this around. Given the critical, unbreakable link between nature’s health and human health, we’re working to break down the barriers that exist between conservation and health organizations. By doing so, we’re promoting clean water for all.
            READ MORE: Integrating Freshwater Conservation with Sanitation and Hygiene Efforts
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            EditSection Title:Creating policies that address climate change
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            EditText: By 2050, scientists estimate, we need to reduce worldwide emissions to at least half of their 1990 levels — or we’ll face catastrophic impacts from climate change. It’s an urgent challenge, and it requires an equally urgent response from governments everywhere. That’s why the Center for Environment and Peace works to inform and influence climate policy at national and global levels to address the causes of climate change and reduce the impact of changes that are already occurring to people's lives and livelihoods. We offer on-the-ground expertise, scientific know-how and practical recommendations so that policymakers have the tools they need to make smart decisions.
            READ MORE: Creating Policies That Address Climate Change
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            EditSection Title:Using nature to reduce emissions
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            EditImage Description: The forest in Manú National Park
            EditText: One of the best ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions? Rely on nature. CI has been a pioneer in finding ways to help keep carbon stored in natural ecosystems. For example, we’re discovering new ways to protect places like tropical rainforests and mangroves — not just for their climate value, but also for the benefits they give to people. With REDD+, CI is helping design and carry out projects that conserve and protect forests, keeping carbon out of the atmosphere and benefiting communities that rely on forests for their livelihoods.
            READ MORE: REDD+: Saving Forests to Keep Our Climate Safe
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            EditSection Title:Adapting to a changing climate
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            EditImage Description: Measuring the growth of a newly planted mangrove.
            EditText: Around the world, many communities are already struggling to cope with the impacts of climate change. CI and our partners work on the ground to help these communities face the challenges posed by rising sea levels, severe storms and more frequent flooding. Our work helps to find cost-effective solutions that deliver long-term results.
            READ MORE: Nature Helps People Adapt to Climate Change
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            More of Our Work Links

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            EditImage Alt Text:Night falls over Rio de Janeiro. © Nikada

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            EditTitle:Science and Innovation
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            EditImage Alt Text:Scientists set a camera trap. © Benjamin Drummond

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            EditTitle:The Ocean
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            EditImage Alt Text:Coral reef in Viti Levu, Fiji, Oceania. © William Crosse