Direct Payments to Conserve Biodiversity
After decades of global efforts to conserve biodiversity through indirect approaches, there is a growing recognition that such initiatives rarely work. The international community has invested billions of dollars to stem the loss of biodiversity in developing nations. Despite these investments, the loss continues. Some authors have pointed to basic conceptual flaws; for example, people are more likely to incorporate new sources of income as complements to existing activities rather than as substitutes for them. Others have noted that the technical, economic, social, and political conditions needed for an indirect approach to succeed are difficult to find in the real world. For conservation initiatives that encourage extractive activities, sustainability is a key concern.