Skip to main content

Investing in Conservation: Market-Based Approaches

Featuring Carrie Sanneman, Ecosystem Services Project Manager with The Willamette Partnership and Todd Gartner, Senior Associate, Conservation Incentives & Markets World Resources Institute.

Increasing pressure on natural systems reduces their ability to provide the services that people rely on - like clean air, clean water, and natural places to play. Emerging incentive programs for ecosystem services provide a mechanism to restore resilient ecological systems by building connections between people who manage land and water and those who can invest in environmental improvement. These incentive programs range from markets, to payment structures, to an array of other options. The Willamette Partnership and the World Resources Institute are leaders in getting innovative market-based approaches to conservation on the ground. “Investing in Conservation: Markets Based Approaches” will cover current efforts and collaborations between both organizations, including examples of regulatory and pre-compliance markets, investment in drinking water supply, and applications to spur corporate investment in healthy ecosystems.

2012-11-27 11.54 Nature's Returns Investing in Conservation Market-Based Approaches from Ben Butterworth on Vimeo.


The Yale Center for Business and the Environment (CBEY) is pleased to announce the second year of Nature’s Returns: Investing in Ecosystem Services, a webinar series that addresses the growing importance of ecosystem service valuation and investment. The benefits that human populations gain from healthy and functioning ecosystems are vast. Clean drinking water filtered by forests, carbon stored in plants or soil, crop pollination by wild insects, and pharmaceutical uses of plants are just a few examples of services humans usually receive for free. A recent wave of efforts to monetize the value of Ecosystem Services presents an opportunity to both protect these assets and bring their worth onto the market. Public and private mechanisms exist to use payments to encourage responsible land management in order to preserve public benefits. Currently, conservationists and investors alike are moving into this space in hopes of achieving a win-win for the economy and the environment.

So, what do Ecosystem Services projects look like? Who are the practitioners involved and what skills are most important in terms of getting into the profession? What obstacles and opportunities does this field face? These questions and more (including those from the audience) will be addressed.