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EditPhoto Title:Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund
EditPhoto Description:Protecting biodiversity by empowering people
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EditImage Description:Balachandra Hegde with his daughter by Aghanashini Valley
EditPhoto Credit:© CI/Photo by Jack Tordoff
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​The Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) enables nongovernmental and private sector organizations to conserve vital ecosystems in the world’s biodiversity hotspots.​


CEPF is a joint initiative of l'Agence Française de Développement, Conservation International, the European Union, the Global Environment Facility, the government of Japan and the World Bank.


By supporting the development of conservation strategies driven by local input, and providing grants to civil society — nongovernmental, private sector and academic organizations — to implement those strategies, CEPF seeks to protect biodiversity, build local conservation leadership and nurture sustainable development. This path enables conservation and communities to flourish in tandem.​


For more information, visit CEPF's website.



Our plan

CEPF grants:

  • Target biodiversity hotspots in developing and transitional countries.
  • Are guided by regional investment strategies — known as "ecosystem profiles" — developed with dozens of local stakeholders.
  • Go directly to civil society groups to build this vital constituency for conservation alongside governmental partners. Grants are awarded on a competitive basis to implement the conservation strategy developed in each ecosystem profile.
  • Help governments meet targets related to the U.N.’s Convention on Biological Diversity, Framework Convention on Climate Change, and Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Create working alliances among diverse groups, combining unique capacities and eliminating duplication of efforts.
  • Achieve results through an ever-expanding network of partners working together toward shared goals. For more information, please visit www.cepf.net​​.



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EditImage Alt Text:Sanje Falls, Tanzania
EditTitle:By the numbers
EditSubtitle:Since CEPF's inception in 2000:
EditText:More than $232 million in grants has been given to more than 2,300 civil society organizations and individuals in more than 93 countries and territories around the globe, leveraging more than $371 million in additional funds from other donors.

In addition to establishing or expanding more than 14 million hectares of critical ecosystems, CEPF grantees have improved the management of more than 45 million hectares of Key Biodiversity Areas and more than 8 million hectares of production landscapes – areas used for crops or other products.

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EditQuote Text (Do not add quotation marks):The unique difference being made by CEPF is being able to really get financial resources to the grassroots organizations that are working in the biodiversity hotspots.
EditQuote Attribution:Jennifer Morris, Conservation International President
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EditDefault Title:Biodiversity + Civil Society: The Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund[Optional]
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      EditSection Title:Ecosystem Profiling
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      EditImage Description: A local boy travels across the Sanetti Plateau, in the Bale Mountains of Ethiopia, on horseback
      EditText: Before investing in a region’s vital ecosystems, CEPF involves anywhere between 100 and 500 of the hotspot's experts and stakeholders — botanists, zoologists, local organizations, local government officials and sustainable development specialists among them. These stakeholders are interviewed, consulted and brought together to discuss conservation in the region. With the information they provide, an “ecosystem profile” is developed. The document gives a clear picture of the current state of the hotspot and the best way forward to protecting its vulnerable biodiversity while improving the livelihoods and well-being of local communities. The profiling process also provides a foundation for collaboration among NGOs, researchers and government, and offers other donors a roadmap for investing in the most urgent conservation priorities and complementing ongoing efforts.
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        EditSection Title:Healthy Fish Habitat Secures Food and Income
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        EditImage Description: Sunrise on the Mekong
        EditText: Health and livelihoods in the Sekong River Basin in Laos are threatened by increased demand for fish, forest products and electricity. With support from CEPF and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), Laos communities are co-managing fisheries and protecting the freshwater ecosystems they rely on.
        READ MORE: Healthy Fish Habitat Secures Food and Income

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        EditPhoto Credit:© Akuppa John Wigham
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        EditSection Title:Tiwai Island
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        EditImage Description: Scenes of Tiwai Island in Sierra Leone, the work-site of CEPF grantee the Environmental Foundation for Africa
        EditText: To guard against further environmental damage and help nearby communities recover from more than a decade of war, CEPF provided support to the Environmental Foundation for Africa (EFA) to restore Sierra Leone’s Tiwai Island, whose concentration and variety of primates is among the highest in the world. In collaboration with local communities, EFA constructed facilities for scientific research and a visitor center, merging protected area management and community development needs.
        READ MORE: Creating a Culture of Conservation in Sierra Leone
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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
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