Protecting Nature's Hotspots for people and prosperity

CEPF E-News Update September 2015

September 2015

In this issue:

Conservation and the Sustainable Development Goals

People are closely connected to biodiversity in the Western Ghats, where tea is a major commodity.

CEPF Grantees Take Action for a Fruitful Future in the Western Ghats

CEPF supports the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the United Nations' recognition that sustaining a healthy environment is vital to the long-term well-being of people. While the core business of CEPF supports Goal 15 — sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss — the conservation of biodiversity assists in achieving many of the SDGs.

Read about CEPF's connection to the SDGs through its investment in the Western Ghats Region of India, where low per-capita income coupled with high population density makes local communities particularly dependent on their ecosystems for livelihoods and basic needs, such as food and water.

One example of results achieved is the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices by 34 tea and coffee estates covering more than 19,000 hectares of land, as well as commitments from major international brands to source supplies from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms in the region.

Related content:

Find out more about CEPF and the SDGs.

Watch a video series about CEPF grantees in the Western Ghats.

Read a blog showcasing regional perspectives on conservation in the Western Ghats.


Feature Stories

Conservation Investment and Support in the Mediterranean Reaches Important Mid-Term Milestone

Read full story.

Helping Communities Manage Their Resources

Read full story.

Reviving Sarus Crane Populations in Cambodia and Vietnam

Read full story.


Videos Showcase Stories from the Hotspots

Jean Wiener: CEPF Grantee and 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize Winner

Funding to Fondation pour la Protection de la Biodiversite Marine helps secure a future for Haiti's marine and coastal areas and the people who rely on them. Watch video.

Species Recovery and Management

Civil society organizations are working to protect species in the Western Ghats Region of India, which is home to a quarter of the country's wildlife. Watch video.

Conserving Ricord's Iguanas in Haiti

Funding to the International Iguana Foundation helps support a local community in creating a municipal wildlife habitat for conservation of Critically Endangered Ricord's iguanas (Cyclura ricordi). Watch video.

CEPF Grantee Exchange Event

CEPF Secretariat members and grantees reflect on the investment in the Eastern Afromontane biodiversity hotspot, which reached its mid-point in July 2015. Watch video.

See full list of videos.


From the Field

Caribbean Islands Hotspot Earlier this month, the government of the Bahamas announced more than 3 million hectares of new protected land, near shore and marine environment. With support from CEPF, the Bahamas National Trust and Island Conservation generated proposals and support for designation of Bobby Cay, Graham's Harbour and Great Lakes as protected areas. Read more here.

East Melanesian Islands Hotspot The James Cook University recently completed its CEPF-funded project that supported the Kwai people in the Solomon Islands through an action-based "learn by doing" approach targeted at traditional leaders and community representatives to develop a medicinal plant and bush foods project. Read more here.

Eastern Afromontane Hotspot The International Gorilla Conservation Programme is working with local community members in the Virunga landscape to increase livelihoods and build capacity in community project planning and development. To date, 42 people from Rwanda and 69 people from Uganda have benefitted from this capacity building. Read more here.

Guinean Forests of West Africa Hotspot In early September, two final consultation workshops for the hotspot took place in Monrovia, Liberia, and Limbe, Cameroon. More than 50 participants from nine African countries gathered and successfully agreed upon 37 priority areas and 16 investment priorities for the ecosystem profile, CEPF's strategy for investment. See photos here.
Indo-Burma Hotspot CEPF grantee the Royal University of Phnom Penh, Centre for Biodiversity Conservation is identifying priority sites and conservation actions for the Endangered fishing cat (Prionailurus viverrinus) in Cambodia. History was made this month when the fishing cat was caught on camera trap in Cambodia. this is the first evidence of the existence of fishing cats in the country in over a decade. Read more here.

Madagascar and Indian Ocean Islands Hotspot CEPF recently awarded the first five grants of its reinvestment in the hotspot. In the Comoros, Dahari will identify and monitor terrestrial conservation priorities; and Blue Ventures Conservation will build capacity for locally managed marine conservation. In the Seychelles, BirdLife International will document the causes of a collapse of the Seychelles magpie robin (Copsychus sechellarum). And in Madagascar, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) will complete a freshwater biodiversity assessment, and the Wildlife Conservation Society will design a road-map for the creation of a future network of protected areas.

Maputaland-Pondoland-Albany Hotspot The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa is working with local communities to restore and improve the management of dispersed plots of indigenous forest along the Ntsubane Forest Complex, part of South Africa's "Wild Coast." This involves helping communities gain rights through community forest agreements for more than 15,000 hectares of production and protected forest, and establishing forest management committees. Read more here.
Mediterranean Basin Hotspot On World Rivers Day (September 27), the Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development released its publication on the natural wealth and legacy of the Drin River Basin. This aims to raise public awareness of the value of the basin's natural wealth and the importance of safeguarding its biodiversity and ecosystem services. Read the full publication here.
Wallacea Hotspot Burung Indonesia, in its capacity as the regional implementation team for the hotspot, has been actively conducting outreach and training to potential civil society organization applicants for CEPF funds, particularly in North Sulawesi and Maluku. The team is focusing on reaching local organizations, explaining the goals of the ecosystem profile, the concept of a key biodiversity area, and how to develop a good project proposal. The next call for proposals is expected to open in October.
Western Ghats Region As the CEPF investment in the region comes to a close, documenting and disseminating biodiversity data has become a high priority. CEPF investments in distributing data have focused on the Western Ghats Biodiversity Portal. During the last year, the number of observations recorded on the site increased from 35,000 to more than 115,000, and the number of registered users increased from around 5,000 to more than 7,000. Visit the portal here.


Calls for Proposals

CEPF currently has two active calls for proposals in the Eastern Afromontane biodiversity hotspot:

1. This call is open only to projects in Ethiopia that aim to mainstream biodiversity into wider development policies, plans and projects, or that improve the protection and management of the key biodiversity area network throughout the hotspot. Letters of Inquiry must be submitted electronically by October 20.

2. This call is for small grants in Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, DRC, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. Applications can be submitted only upon invitation. Please write to cepf-eam-rit@birdlife.org first to discuss the project idea.

Click here for more information.


CEPF in the News

CEPF-supported initiatives are often reported in news articles and magazine features. Below is a sampling of recent stories featuring CEPF. Click here to view all news about CEPF.

September 2015
Guardians of the Ghats
Civil Society Online

September 2, 2015
Bahama Islands Info
August 12, 2015
by David Fuchs

August 11, 2015
Local rangers in the spotlight
Solomon Star


Grantee Resources

Grantee Publications

Eastern Afromontane Hotspot
Institutional Fundraising for Conservation Projects, BirdLife International, August 2015, Arabic (PDF - 2.2 MB)

Grantee Newsletters

Caribbean Islands Hotspot
Capacité, Caribbean Natural Resources Institute, Issue 13, September 2015, English (PDF - 3.2 MB)

East Melanesian Islands Hotspot
East Melanesian Islands Newsletter, IUCN Oceania, Issue 4, August 2015, English (PDF - 659 KB)

Mediterranean Basin Hotspot
MEDMARAVIS News, MEDMARAVIS, Issue 5, July 2015, English (PDF - 1.4 MB)

Med RIT Newsletter, BirdLife International, Summer 2015, English, French, Arabic (PDF - 3.4 MB)

New Grantee Orientation Calls

CEPF hosts a new grantee orientation call once a quarter. Click here to download the audio files.

Final Reports

CEPF project final reports detail the results and lessons learned by grant. Click here to view all project final reports, which can be filtered by region.

Approved Grants

CEPF's project database includes summaries of all the grants awarded to date and also news, publications and other resources related to individual grants. Click here to view the project database.


Photo credits: Man in India, © Cristina Mittermeier; Birdwatching in Ulcinj, © Olivier Langrand; Memberes of the Tongwe Tribe in Tanzania, © Tongwe Trust/photo by Said Katensi; Sarus crane (Grus antigone), © coracii (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) Piping plover, one of many threatened species found in the Bahamas, CC0 Public Domain; Boys fishing in the Solomon Islands, © Kerrie Kennedy; Conservation in Uganda's Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, © Benjamin Drummond; Participants at the final stakeholder workshop in Limbe, © Conservation International/photo by Peggy Poncelet; Fishing cat, CC0 Public Domain; Waterfall in Madagascar, © Cristina Mittermeier; Community members from the Ntsubane Forest Complex, © Conservation International/photo by Julie Shaw; Drin River Basin, © Thomais Vlachogianni; Reading field guide, © Burung Indonesia/photo by Langgeng A. Utomo; Working on the Western Ghats Portal, © CEPF-ATREE/photo by IoraPro; Conservationist identifying plants in Ethiopia, © Robin Moore/iLCP

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