December 2013: Protecting Forests and Restoring Watersheds via Eco-Loan Financing (ELF)

In 2006, Nectandra Institute began working with community water management associations (CWMAs) to promote and carry out cloud forest conservation primarily in the upper Balsa River Watershed in Costa Rica. There are some 2,000 CWMAs in the country. These volunteer-run organizations, representing entire communities through their general membership, provide potable water service all over the rural areas with little government support. CWMAs are keenly aware of the hydrological importance of montane forests, making them natural allies in the effort to protect these ecosystems. The changing climate's anticipated effects on precipitation patterns and consequently the ecosystem dynamics of these forests makes concrete, protective and long-lasting action a real necessity. In response to this challenge, Nectandra Institute launched its Eco-Loan Financing (ELF) Program, which couples land acquisition financing with forest and watershed education. ELF enables the communities to own and control their water sources, while also providing them with the knowledge and information to restore forests and maintain the watershed.

Join Luis Villa, Nectandra Institute, and Lisa Brush, The Stewardship Network as they present on this important stewardship topic.

Luis Villa - Luis has worked at Nectandra Institute in Costa Rica for almost seven years, including the most recent as its chief operating officer. Prior to this, Luis spent seven years working in community and economic development in northern California. Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Luis graduated from Stanford University with a degree in psychology. He enjoys running and eating papaya, only not at the same time.

Lisa Brush - Executive Director, The Stewardship Network. Lisa has worked in the environmental field in Michigan for the last fifteen years. She is currently the Executive Director of the Stewardship Network and has been involved with the Network since its inception more than 10 years ago. She has a wealth of experience helping non-scientific people understand scientific issues. For over nine years, as she has built and coordinated The Stewardship Network, she has emphasized effective and meaningful stakeholder involvement in developing and implementing all aspects of this program. She has a M.S. in Natural Resources from the University of Michigan and a B.A. (Science in Society) from Wesleyan University.

Webcast Date: 
Wednesday, December 11, 2013 - 12:00pm
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