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Birdlife International

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São Tomé and Príncipe

2021

Carbon credits for biodiversity & protected areas

In collaboration with BirdLife International, Natural Strategies develops a country-wide sustainable finance plan for protected areas and biodiversity in São Tomé & Príncipe.

Natural Strategies identifies opportunities to generate nature-based carbon credits and other revenue-generating instruments, assesses their feasibility and structures roadmaps to turn them into action.


The oceanic island state of São Tomé and Príncipe (STP) features a remarkable wealth of biodiversity. Stretching over a quarter of it 1,001 square kilometers, the country’s native forests include some of the largest concentrations of unique species in the world. However, habitat loss, overexploitation and the introduction of non-native species threaten the biodiversity of STP.

In response to this, BirdLife International hired Natural Strategies to develop a country-wide sustainable finance plan to strengthen STP’s protected areas and biodiversity. To do so, Natural Strategies identified financing gaps for protected area management; developed options to address these gaps, based on a cost-benefit assessment; and modelled costs and revenues of prioritized scenarios. This included designing concrete opportunities to generate high quality carbon credits from nature-based solutions projects; combined with other innovative financing instruments such as private sector impact investments in agro-forestry and fisheries, payments for ecosystem services and debt-restructuring for nature conservation.

For the highest priority opportunities we also developed a monitoring & evaluation plan and an investment promotion plan - with the objective to generate returns on investments into the country’s protected areas and preserve its rich biodiversity while maintaining healthy ecosystems for its local communities.

Thematic areas

Biodiversity finance, Protected areas

SDGs

Climate action

Life on land