By Peter Seligmann, Chairman and CEO, Conservation International
In 2013, Conservation International (CI) became one of the first nonprofit organizations to be accredited as a Project Agency of the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The GEF unites 183 countries, in partnership with the private sector, international institutions, and nongovernmental organizations, to fund international conservation. Over more than two decades, the GEF has established an impressive track record of efficiency and effectiveness in delivering positive results for environmental quality and sustainable economic development around the world.
As a GEF Project Agency, CI brings nearly 30 years of experience in innovative finance and community-based conservation to this partnership. We are well-positioned as an organization that can help ensure that GEF-based funding maximizes benefits for nature and human well-being.
There is a direct connection between international conservation, resource scarcity, and economic, national, and global security. Funding from the GEF helps to catalyze innovative solutions to key global challenges such as tropical deforestation, water scarcity, declining marine fisheries, wildlife trafficking, and climate change. Being part of the delivery system for this funding enables CI to expand our role in conserving nature and the essential services it provides to humanity, such as fresh water, food, fertile soil, and life-saving medicines. By addressing the underlying drivers degrading this essential “natural capital,” we can promote the security interests of people everywhere. We are honored to work with visionary governments who understand that nature is the bedrock for humanity.