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Unlocking Forest Finance

A Global Canopy Project
coffee beans
The Challenge

Agricultural expansion into forested regions drives two thirds of deforestation worldwide.

In tropical forest regions this impacts on the ability of countries to meet climate mitigation targets and to ensure sustainable development. A shift to sustainable agricultural production at scale needs significant upfront investment for new production systems, technical assistance, and to help bridge the transitional period as more sustainable systems are implemented. Private sector investment is critical, and so there is a need to catalyse private investment to support this transformation. This requires an understanding of the enabling conditions for greater private sector investment, and a development of financial instruments to achieve this.

Our Approach

The Unlocking Forest Finance (UFF) project aims to channel finance towards the transition to sustainable landscapes.

This transition can increase agricultural production while protecting forests and providing many other benefits for local people. As part of this work, Global Canopy has produced Financing Sustainable Landscapes, a detailed guide to creating and financing such projects.

Operating at a subnational level, the project aims to catalyse the creation of new financial mechanisms to stop the conversion of tropical forest for commodity production, and to support a shift towards more sustainable modes of development.

The project is made up of three ‘sustainable landscape initiatives’ in Mato Grosso and Acre, both in Brazil, and San Martin, in Peru. These initiatives take a landscape-wide perspective, optimising land use to balance the needs of agriculture, conservation and sustainable livelihoods.


This project is part of the German Government's International Climate Initiative. 

Unlocking Forest Finance (UFF) brings together NGOs, environmental and social sector safeguarding institutes, financial sector experts and strategic advisors including Credit SuisseEuropean Investment Bank and Althelia Ecosphere

The project relies on a number of local partners: Environmental Services Development Company (CDSA) in Acre, Brazil, the Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM), in Mato Grosso,  Brazil, and the Centre for Development and Research in Upper Amazonia (CEDISA) in San Martin, Peru.

Other implementing partners and subcontractors are: The National Agricultural University of La Molina (UNALM) in San Martín, World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-UK, and other WWF offices), Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI)Vivid EconomicsHelmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), the International Institute for Sustainability (IIS), the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), the National Institute for Space Research – Centre for Earth Systems Science (INPE-CCST).