Scaling Up Conservation Finance: What will it take?
Wed. 17th April 2019, 1:15-2:30pm Conference Room S-2726-2727
Organized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), and the Permanent Mission of France to the United Nations, this event explores the challenges and innovative approaches to meeting the challenges of mobilizing finance, including private finance, on a scale needed to halt and reverse the degradation of natural ecosystems and loss of
biodiversity of the past several decades. This is critical to achieving the sustainable development goals, yet until now investments in natural capital remain severely underfunded. A number of initiatives supported by new thinking and financial innovation are trying to address this challenge, with some success. The event will review some of the more interesting initiatives with a view to informing Ministries of Finance, multilateral and national development banks, and private financiers attending this year’s Financing for Development Forum at the United Nations. The event aims to stimulate discussion between public, private and conservation community actors on ways to mobilize larger amounts for investment in conservation of valuable ecosystems and biodiversity.
Following the 2016 World Conservation Congress, IUCN and partners launched the Coalition for Private Investment in Conservation (CPIC), which continues its work to provide substantive guidance to financial institutions on designing financial instruments which yield both attractive financial returns and significant conservation benefits. The progress of CPIC’s work will be presented, as will the experience of other conservation finance initiatives.
A key question for discussion will be: what are the key obstacles to large-scale ‘bankability’ of conservation projects and how are they being overcome. It has been suggested that the conservation finance field is still wide open to intermediaries, to project aggregators with field expertise who can respond to the substantial interest of investors by packing projects to meet size thresholds. Intermediaries are tasked with providing replicability and standardization for investors1. At the same time, there is a need for project developers on the ground who can wed the needs of local nature and local communities with the needs of global investors.
Opening remarks: H.E. Anne Gueguen, Deputy Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations
Moderator: David O’Connor, Permanent Observer to UN, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
Standardize, Replicate and Aggregate: the Work of the Coalition for Private Investment in Conservation (CPIC)
Frank Hawkins, Head of IUCN North America Office
Financing Conservation at Scale: Perspectives from the Field
Caleb McClennen, Vice President Global Conservation, Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)
The Lion’s Share: Harnessing Advertising Power for Conservation Financing
Midori Paxton, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Lessons for Conservation Finance from Climate Finance
Bruce Usher, Columbia Business School
NatureVest Infrastructure and Renewable Energy Investment in Emerging Markets
JC Danilovich, Senior Director, NatureVest, The Nature Conservancy
Lessons on Getting to Scale from the Conservation Finance Alliance
David Meyers, Executive Director, Conservation Finance Alliance
Q&A and Open Discussion
For those without a UN grounds pass, please RSVP to Conor Strong (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your name as printed on your government issued ID by noon Friday, 12 April 2019.
Photo credit: UN Forum Home Page