The Resource Mobilization for Biodiversity Conservation (ResMob) Project presented a five-day training session on the economic valuation of ecosystem services at the Hardap Resort at Mariental this week.
The ResMob project is jointly implemented by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism and GIZ, commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety.
Decision-makers, members of parliament, technical experts and key stakeholders that have considerable interest in economic valuations methods as well as selected members of the Environmental Economics Network of Namibia and some students from the University of Namibia (UNAM) and the Namibian University of Science and Technology (NUST) attended the training session from 31 October to 4 November.
In Namibia, nature counts because ecosystems and their biodiversity underpin the country’s economy and human well-being and need to be conserved.
The natural capital is a basic necessity for all. About 70 percent of Namibia’s population directly relies on it for their livelihood.
“The conservation of Namibia’s biodiversity depends on our capacity to understand, measure and value nature and to design economic instruments and implement policy. Investing in human capital and strengthening environmental economics in Namibia is crucial for achieving our biodiversity conservation targets”, said Project Coordinator, Mr. Ferdinand Mwapopi.
“At this training session we looked into methods of how to value nature and participants learned to apply valuation methods and instruments correctly, with relevance to their specific policy purpose and with a sound understanding of the underlying economic principles.”
The overarching goal of the ResMob project is to improve Namibia’s capacity in mobilizing resources for biodiversity conservation, specifically to enable the country to effectively implement its second National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (NBSAP 2).
Namibia launched its first National Biodiversity and Action Plan (NBSAP 1) in 2001 as part of its efforts to conserve biodiversity. Namibia is a Party to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), whose objectives are the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable benefit sharing arising from the commercial utilization of genetic resources and related traditional knowledge.
Although Namibia’s NBSAP 1 acted as an important tool for biodiversity conservation, its review found that its implementation was limited in some areas due to funding and communication constraints.
The project is also developing customized training programmes, cooperating with tertiary education institutions, strengthening economics in Namibia by supporting the Environmental Economics Network of Namibia (EEEN), which brings together like-minded individuals working together to protect Namibia’s inimitable biodiversity by promoting and mainstreaming the use of environmental economics within Namibia.