Ecosystem services, the axis of the new agreement between Peru and CIAT
Facilitating the generation of proposals and actions to strategically develop natural resource and environmental management in Peru, over the next 5 years, is the main objective of the agreement to be signed today between the Ministry of the Environment (MINAM) in Peru and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) – strengthening the partnership and capacity of both institutions.
“The signing of this agreement is a new opportunity to further contribute to sustainable development in Latin America and the Caribbean – a region where adequate natural resource management is crucial to the future of countries such as Peru,” said Elcio Guimarães, CIAT regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean.
The agreement provides continuity and greater scope for collaboration which has been ongoing since 2010 through a pilot project for ecosystem service payments in the Cañete River Basin in Peru, funded by the CGIAR Challenge Program on Water and Food (CPWF).
“Payments for ecosystem services aim to offer land users an incentive to not degrade ecosystems and their services but rather to protect them” (CIFOR, 2011). In Peru, for example, the users of the lower part of the basin, voluntarily financially remunerate those living in the upper part of the river basin who in turn promise to care for the ecosystems that provide a source of water.
This payment scheme will be reflected in the creation of a fund, supported by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF), through which they hope to develop natural resource conservation projects and entrepreneurial initiatives to benefit those living in the highlands.
Through this experience, the Peruvian government has increased awareness about the need for policies to promote such schemes throughout the country. A bill is currently being reviewed for approval in Congress.
The new agreement will also allow for the development and implementation of a near real time early warning system through the Terra-i platform. Accordingly, this specific agreement will contribute to strengthening the Ministry’s technical and analytical capacity to apply Terra-i.
Photo by Neil Palmer (CIAT)