Sustainable management of natural resources (Ecuador)

Initiative

Summary

The ‘Sustainable management of natural resources project (GESOREN)’ is part of the German development cooperation programme to protect the environment and conserve natural resources. It has four components:

Developing institutions and strategies for the conservation of natural resources
Support is given to various partners to develop instruments for planning, evaluating and monitoring protected areas. The project provides expertise and experience with dialogue and coordination processes on environmental topics. In addition, legal and technical recommendations are drawn up for designating and establishing protected areas.

Valorisation of natural resources and environmental services 
The project advises small farmers and producers’ associations on the promotion of value chains, in particular for cocoa, coffee, timber and fruit. The topics covered include ecologically sustainable cultivation methods, increasing production and quality, organisational development, marketing and compliance with quality standards in order to obtain certification as a Fairtrade and/or organic producer. In addition, the project offers advice on development partnerships with the private sector and public institutions as well as food security.

Local governance of nature conservation and eco-corridors
The capacities of civil society and provincial and municipal administrations are developed to enable them to undertake activities and assume responsibility for the conservation and management of natural resources. The project also supports the development of participation models, such as dialogue platforms, and encourages networking between relevant actors. The programme component is being implemented by the consulting firm COMO.

National framework for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) and adaption strategies
The project provides advice to government institutions and non-governmental actors on developing a coherent, institutional and legal framework for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD).

It also supports the implementation of financing models and measures to enable the sustainable use and conservation of natural resources in protected areas and their buffer zones. This includes, for example, introducing a system for making compensation payments to landowners for environmental services, such as maintaining water storage capacity by protecting areas of land.

The project operates at all social and political levels. For example, it is supporting the Ecuadorian Ministry of the Environment in the implementation of both the National System of Protected Areas (SNAP) and sustainable forestry and agricultural policy. The project is also working to strengthen and advance the organisational development of environmental organisations and regional authorities in order to improve their provision of services. Development partnerships with the private sector are also very important. Direct cooperation between producers’ groups and companies improves technologies, productivity and marketing, and raises income.