The Equator Initiative is a multi-sector partnership that brings together the United Nations, governments, civil society, and grassroots organizations. Current partners to the Equator Initiative include: Conservation International, Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), Ecoagriculture Partners, Fordham University, The German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the Government of Norway, IUCN-International Union for Conservation of Nature, The Nature Conservancy, PCI Media Impact, Rare, Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Foundation and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Conservation International applies innovations in science, economics, policy and ommunity participation to protect the Earth's richest regions of plant and animal diversity in the hotspots, major tropical wilderness areas and key marine cosystems. With headquarters in Washington, D.C., CI works in more than 30 countries on four continents. Conservation International believes that the Earth's natural heritage must be maintained if future generations are to thrive spiritually, culturally, and economically. CI's mission is to conserve Earth's living natural heritage, our global biodiversity, and to demonstrate that human societies are able to live harmoniously with nature.
Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), first signed at the 1992 Rio Earth Summit and now counting 188 state parties, is dedicated to promoting sustainable development. Conceived as a practical tool for translating the principles of Agenda 21 into reality, the CBD recognizes that biological diversity is about more than plants, animals and micro organisms and their ecosystems – it is about people and our need for food security, medicines, fresh air and water, shelter, and a clean and healthy environment in which to live. The 2010 Biodiversity Target set by the CBD- reducing biodiversity loss as a contribution to poverty alleviation- was further endorsed at the World Summit on Sustainable Development.
Ecoagriculture Partners is an international non-profit organization that works with farmers, conservationists, researchers, leaders in rural development, entrepreneurs and policymakers around the world to sustain, develop and promote ecoagriculture. Ecoagriculture Partners emphasizes respect for cultural diversity and self-determination and thus embraces partners who use a wide range of approaches to achieve ecoagriculture outcomes. Ecoagriculture Partners was “incubated” in 2002 as a special project by its initial co-sponsors: the Future Harvest Foundation, Forest Trends, IUCN - the World Conservation Union, and the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF).
Since 1841, Fordham University has offered a distinctive educational experience rooted in the 460-year-old Jesuit tradition, a tradition characterized by excellence in teaching, the care and development of each individual student, and a heritage of public and international service. Fordham has three residential campuses in New York, the tree-lined, 85-acre Rose Hill campus in the Bronx; the cosmopolitan Lincoln Center campus in the heart of Manhattan's performing arts center; and the scenic Marymount campus located on the banks of the mighty Hudson River in the hamlet of Tarrytown, N.Y. Among its 11 undergraduate, graduate and professional schools, the University enrolls more than 15,000 students hailing from all 50 states and 50 foreign countries. As part of its educational mission, Fordham encourages its students to develop an individual commitment to others and to seek out opportunities to make their own contributions to the communities in which they live and to the wider world.
The German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), provides German development cooperation, and has three priority areas for funding: poverty alleviation, environmental and resource protection, and education and training. BMZ is committed to sustainable development in which economic, social and ecological development are viewed as an indivisible unit. BMZ’s focal areas are: poverty alleviation; environmental and resource protection; and equal opportunities for women and men; all are considered significant multi-sectoral tasks. In all German development cooperation, the impact of initiatives on poverty, the environment and women in the country in question are evaluated.
The Government of Norway joined the Equator Initiative Parternship on May 26, 2008 at the 9th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP9). Historically, Norway has been a global leader in its efforts to address environmental degradation, loss of biodiversity and more recently, the threats of climate change. The Government of Norway recently pledged US $2.5 billion in Bali, Indonesia for demonstration activities for what is being called reduced emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD). In addition to calling for an integrated approach between UN agencies, the CBD, and the UNFCCC to REDD, Norway has expressed interest in ensuring local and indigenous peoples’ input into the development of the mechanism, to ensure that benefits flow to the community level.
IUCN - International Union for Conservation of Nature was founded in 1948 and brings together 78 states, 112 government agencies, 735 NGOs, 35 affiliates, and some 10,000 scientists and experts from 181 countries in a unique worldwide partnership. Its mission is to influence, encourage and assist societies throughout the world to conserve the integrity and diversity of nature and to ensure that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable. Within the framework of global conventions IUCN has helped over 75 countries to prepare and implement national conservation and biodiversity strategies. IUCN has approximately 1000 staff, most of whom are located in its 42 regional and country offices while 100 work at its Headquarters in Gland, Switzerland.
The Nature Conservancy is an international nonprofit organization whose mission is to preserve the Earth's diverse array of plants and animals by protecting the lands and waters they need to survive. Founded in 1951, the Conservancy has worked in a science-based and collaborative way with local communities, government agencies and private businesses to help protect more than 90 million acres in 30 countries.
PCI Media Impact is a leader in Entertainment- Education and social change communications. For 27 years, we have worked with local partners to produce more than 3,000 episodes of 75 television and radio programs to address the most pressing social and environmental issues. Together, these programs have reached more than 1 billion people in more than 40 countries.
Rare is an international nonprofit conservation organization with the mission to protect wildlands of globally significant biodiversity by enabling local people to benefit from their preservation. Using innovative capacity development and media technology training, Rare works with more than 120 grassroots and government-level conservationists to help communities connect with and become stewards of their rich natural surroundings.
The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) works according to directives of the Swedish Parliament and Government to reduce poverty in the world with the overall goal of contributing to making it possible for poor people to improve their living conditions. Sida works with both short-term humanitarian assistance and long-term development cooperation. Short-term assistance is used primarily to provide relief in situations of great hardship, such as natural disasters or conflicts. In development cooperation, Sida works on a long-term basis with partner countries in order to contribute to these countries'development.
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the UN's global development network, an organization advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life. UNDP is on the ground in 166 countries, working with them on their own solutions to global and national development challenges. As they develop local capacity, they draw on the people of UNDP and its wide range of partners. In addition, UNDP helps developing countries attract and use aid effectively. In all its activities, UNDP encourages the protection of human rights and the empowerment of women.
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)is the UN system's designated entity for addressing environmental issues at the global and regional level. Its mandate is to coordinate the development of environmental policy consensus by keeping the global environment under review and bringing emerging issues to the attention of governments and the international community for action. UNEP's mission is to provide leadership and encourage partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations.
UN Foundation was established by Mr. Ted Turner, who chose the United Nations as the vehicle for his global gift because the UN provides the machinery to help find solutions to international challenges and to deal with pressing concerns facing people everywhere. The Foundation's mission is to support the goals and objectives of the United Nations and its Charter in order to promote a more peaceful, prosperous and just world - with special emphasis on the UN's work on behalf of economic, social, environmental and humanitarian causes.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is a US government agency responsible for administering aid to foreign countries to promote social and economic development. Founded in 1961, USAID was born in a spirit of progress and innovation, and the culture of USAID continues to serve as a reflection of core American values that are rooted in a belief for doing the right thing. Today, USAID staff work in more than 100 countries around the world, extending a helping hand to people struggling to make a better life, recover from a disaster or striving to live in a free and democratic country.
The Wildlife Conversation Society's goal is to conserve the world's largest wild places in 15 priority regions, home to more than 50% of the world's biodiversity.This is outlined in their 2020 strategy, which positions WCS to maintain its historic focus on the protection of species while developing an ambitious plan to engage with a rapidly changing world.