September 1st through 10th in 2016 marked the dates of the IUCN World Conservation Congress held in Honolulu, Hawai’i. This congress’s theme was fittingly labeled as “Planet at a Crossroads”, representing the crucial decisions that need to be made both now and in the coming years to conserve our planets ability to survive. Thousands of conservation’s greatest minds gathered on the islands to discuss the trajectory of the planet’s ecosystems, and how we can work to correctly guide them. The subjects addressed at the congress had no bounds, with experts from every field joining together to shares ideas and information; NOAA explored mapping technologies with their ‘Science on a Sphere’ exhibit, Jane Goodall discussed the importance of educating younger generations to lead the next wave of environmental stewards, new technologies debuted that pushed the frontiers of research and education in the conservation realm, and hundreds presented individual research projects and ideas. As this and so much more occurred at the Hawai’i Convention Center, visitors and presenters explored throughout, each day leaving inspired and determined to take action to better this planet’s future.
Among the most important drivers of all these conservation projects lies finance; the estimated gap in conservation funding is $250B annually. CFA played a critical role in presenting conservation finance as a crucial part of the global agenda. Over twenty-one panels, workshops, and Stream sessions featured CFA members - see the Conservation Finance Journey for more details. For the CFA, the WCC represented an opportunity to bring our members, sponsors, and interested parties together to discuss our past, present, and future. Members shared completed and ongoing projects and research, and ideas for the upcoming direction of the CFA were brought to the table for discussion.
CFA’s strategic presence at Honolulu’s WCC was consistent with its core mission to promote sustainable financing for biodiversity conservation worldwide. Members from around the globe participated in forums and workshops to inform on conservation finance principles and share the accomplishments of their institutions. As the CFA grows, our members inspire by enabling global collaboration and furthering innovation and the spread ideas to the world of conservation finance.
To check out other events, forums, and information regarding the World Conservation Congress please take a look at the IUCN congress website. For further reading on the CFA's presence at the 2016 WCC, a detailed report on our activities is available for download, or feel free to contact our Secretariat with specific questions. More photos from the event are also available.