The Forest Trends Marine Ecosystem Services (MARES) Katoomba Meeting, running in Palo Alto, is focusing on the role that PES can play in promoting sustainable use of ocean resources. The meeting capitalises on ever-expanding interest in finding innovative solutions to conserve our marine environment and resources, in order to safeguard human well-being.
In 2003, Blue Ventures set out on an ambitious mission: to demonstrate that holistic approaches to marine conservation work and that grass-roots, community-based leadership has the power to transform ecosystems and developing world societies.
For over a decade, Forest Trends has been leading the debate about PES through convening the Katoomba series of conferences and through the development of services such as the Ecosystem Marketplace.
Blue Ventures' work has won international acclaim for its progress in demonstrating the sustainable economic benefits of responsible marine stewardship. Madagascar is widely regarded as the world's most critical conservation priority, yet the island continent faces massive environmental problems linked to climate change, population growth and over-exploitation of natural resources.
"For almost a decade Blue Ventures has been pioneering new and integrated approaches to making marine conservation financially sustainable.” said Ben Metz, in Palo Alto this week. "Our attendance at Katoomba and the great interest in our approach from marine conservation actors from across the globe, is a sure sign of the growing role that social enterprise is playing in supporting marine resource management.”
Blue Ventures’ award-winning approaches to financing marine conservation include highly acclaimed ecotourism and carbon offsetting programmes, as well as community-based sustainable aquaculture projects.