A flock of flamingos on a lake at sunrise.
Kenyan Sunrise A flamboyance of flamingos fly over a lake in Kenya. © Xiangli Zhang/TNC Photo Contest 2021
Perspectives

Enduring Earth

Collaborating for lasting conservation at scale.

March 12, 2024

Reaching Global 30x30 Targets: Mongolia PFP

In April 2024, the Government of Mongolia, in collaboration with local herding communities, TNC and Enduring Earth, will launch the Eternal Mongolia Project Finance for Permanence (PFP), an endeavor that commits all the funding and policy commitments needed for Mongolia to achieve its 30x30 conservation ambitions while providing a secure environmental and economic future for Mongolians.

Enduring Earth is a collaboration of The Nature Conservancy, The Pew Charitable Trusts, World Wildlife Fund and ZOMALAB—who are working with local communities to mobilize ambition, resources and permanent funding for nations to tackle the world’s biodiversity and climate crises.

Our planet is gripped by dual crises: biodiversity loss and climate change are rapidly altering our world and the natural systems we depend on. But we still have a chance to bend the trajectory of these threats so that people and nature can thrive.  

The scientific evidence shows we can stem these crises if we protect at least 30% of lands, ocean and fresh water by 2030. In 2022, nearly 200 countries pledged to do just that—but most lack the support and the durable financing to deliver on these ambitions. 

That’s where Enduring Earth comes in. Enduring Earth offers a proven pathway to achieve the world’s 30x30 goal with strategies that are effective, lasting, inclusive and beneficial to local communities’ economies. 

Enduring Earth: An Ambitious Approach

The Nature Conservancy, along with The Pew Charitable Trusts, World Wildlife Fund and ZOMALAB, created Enduring Earth, an initiative that engages nations and local communities across the planet to accelerate lasting conservation. Enduring Earth partners share staff, donors and technical expertise—no matter which organization leads a project. By pooling our resources around a shared mission, the collaboration leads to lasting and positive impact at a scale greater than what any one institution could achieve alone. 

By 2030, Enduring Earth intends to:  

  • Protect more than 1 billion hectares of land, ocean and freshwater systems;
  • Work in partnership to secure at least $2 billion in new funding to support sustainable economic growth;
  • Invest in greater protection and effective management of protected lands and waters; and
  • Uphold the rights of local communities and Indigenous Peoples. 
Protecting Mongolia's Wildlife (5:12) The Eternal Mongolia initiative will protect more of Mongolia's places and people, now and into the future. Produced and directed by Asher Svidensky.

PFPs: Conservation's Most Powerful Tool

Central to Enduring Earth’s approach is a proven model called Project Finance for Permanence (PFP), perhaps the most powerful tool in the conservation toolbox. In a “single close” moment, rights-holders and stakeholders formally adopt a full conservation plan and funding commitments to protect systems of conservation areas for generations to come. It’s a proven strategy that has been used in places such as Canada, Brazil and Costa Rica.  

Several interdependent components help distinguish Enduring Earth and PFPs from other conservation finance and planning tools, including: 

  • The Single Close. All necessary funds must be committed and all closing conditions must be met before a PFP deal is done. This single close moment brings together all rights-holders and stakeholders, funding commitments, conservation and community blueprints and governance that are needed for lasting conservation. Until these are secured, no one writes a check, and no dollar is distributed.
  • Conservation at Scale. PFPs don’t work with single sites or landscapes and seascapes. They work with entire systems of conservation areas, and have ambitious, unifying and measurable conservation goals.
  • Durable Financing. PFPs develop financial models that deliver the funding needed for nature for the foreseeable future. 
  • Indigenous and Community Stewardship. Community engagement, leadership and benefits are pillars of the PFP model. Conservation plans are co-designed with local leaders and communities to ensure that their goals and values are integrated.  
  • Governance and Accountability. Funds and the ambitious vision are administered by an independently governed entity, and new funds are disbursed based on performance and delivery of outcomes.   

A Story of Global Impact

Putting PFPs into Practice

The PFP approach was first tested by First Nations in Canada, supported by TNC, to secure protection and long-term management of portions of the Great Bear Rainforest in 2006. TNC's next PFP, Forever Costa Rica, followed in 2010. The PFP model has since been used in four other large projects led by WWF in Brazil, Bhutan, Peru and most recently in Colombia

When it formed in 2021, Enduring Earth identified 10 new PFP projects in its first phase (through 2025), including four led by TNC: in Mongolia, Kenya, Gabon and the Great Bear Sea in Canada. In 2024, the Government of Mongolia, in collaboration with local herding communities, The Nature Conservancy and Enduring Earth, is expected to launch the Eternal Mongolia PFP.

Designed to help Mongolia achieve its 30x30 conservation ambitions to protect its lands and fresh water, it is the largest land-based protection deal in TNC’s history. Also this year, a PFP led by 17 First Nations—with the support of federal and provincial governments—is expected to close, providing for the conservation of 10 million hectares of ocean and coastal areas in the Great Bear Sea region of Canada, and supporting sustainable local economies.

Now is the Time to Act

For the first time in human history, the world has come together with a common goal to protect nature. But we must act now to make these historic commitments a reality and to accelerate durable conservation at a pace and scale never seen before. 

Enduring Earth and the PFP model represent one of the best opportunities to enable countries to meet their conservation and climate goals. Around the world, Enduring Earth partners are working to establish and expand permanently protected areas and improve how they’re managed, secure long-term government commitments that achieve conservation at scale and bring economic and wellbeing benefits to communities. 

The time is now to create a world where people and nature thrive.  

Case Studies


 

PFP Disclosures

As part of the Enduring Earth partnership, TNC is working with the Government of Gabon to develop a PFP that would help fund the country’s ambitious goal to protect 30 percent of its marine, terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems by 2030. The project is funded in part by the Global Environment Facility.  Download the stakeholder engagement plan and the environmental and social management framework here:

 

Global Insights

Check out our latest thinking and real-world solutions to some of the most complex challenges facing people and the planet today.

WWF® and ©1986 Panda Symbol are owned by WWF. All rights reserved.