About Us: Overview

The current global economic model has damaged natural systems and used resources to the point of scarcity, making it essential that we find ways to restore and conserve the natural environment.

Fortunately, innovative solutions are emerging. Global markets and other incentives for rewarding ecosystem services like carbon sequestration, water purification, and biodiversity conservation are developing, establishing new market values for these ecosystem services.

To date, however, markets for ecosystem services have largely bypassed local and indigenous communities; yet they can only succeed if they properly engage and benefit these groups who are vitally important stewards of forests and other ecosystems.

Forest Trends’ Communities and Markets Initiative supports community rights and livelihoods based on integrated natural resource management approaches, building local capacity to benefit from ecosystem services and other economic incentives.

Forest Trends' Communities and Markets Initiative seeks to link communities to environmental markets, working to create the awareness and capacity for communities to participate and benefit from payments and compensation schemes in recognition and retribution of their stewardship role of ecosystem services. We support communities' land tenure rights as their right and the basis for securing their cultural identity and economic development, and as a pre-condition for their successful participation in environmental markets.