Conservation Can Reduce Poverty

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Well-managed, locally-supported marine reserves in the Asia-Pacific region can significantly help reduce poverty and enhance the quality of life for residents of local communities, according to a new study, Nature’s Investment Bank, released today by The Nature Conservancy.

“This important study demonstrates that conservation and human well-being are indelibly linked,” said Stephanie Meeks, acting president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy. “It’s clear from this study that taking steps to protect vital natural systems, such as through the establishment of marine protected areas, provides clear benefits to people as well as wildlife.”

Governments around the world are wrestling with questions about whether investments in conservation benefit the lives of extremely impoverished people. The Nature’s Investment Bank study provides new, tangible evidence that these investments do bring about measurable economic and quality of life benefits.

Co-authored by Nature Conservancy policy advisor Craig Leisher, Dutch economist Dr. Peter van Beukering, and Brazilian/Australian social scientist Dr. Lea M. Scherl, this study found that restoration of local resources