The challenges confronting the conservation of the planet’s richness of life threaten to overwhelm our collective efforts to limit species loss and degradation of ecosystems and the services that they deliver. The foundation of biodiversity conservation for well over a century have been protected areas (PAs). While successful, they are increasingly vulnerable to land use changes taking place around them. In response to these trends, conservationists and international organizations have developed and actively supported a new biodiversity conservation paradigm: biodiversity mainstreaming. It is the process of embedding biodiversity considerations into policies, strategies and practices of key public and private actors to promote conservation and sustainable use of natural resources beyond PA boundaries. This STAP Advisory Document on Mainstreaming Biodiversity in Practice reports on the outcome of two workshops on this issue that took place in Cape Town, South Africa in 2004 and 2013. In 2004, the objective was to review the concept of biodiversity mainstreaming, to promote best practices in GEF projects focused on production landscapes and seascapes, and to assess the effectiveness of such interventions. In 2013, the objective was to assess lessons learned following investments totaling over US$ 1.6 billion made since 2003 by the GEF in over 300 mainstreaming projects in 135 countries. Case studies and perspectives on mainstreaming are also included. The report concludes that while progress has been made to mainstream biodiversity into broader policy and practice areas, it is clear that greater care needs to be brought to the design, implementation, and assessment of mainstreaming projects to inform and improve future efforts.
Publication Date: April 2014
Authors: Brian J. Huntley, Kent H. Redford.