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Equator Initiative Case Study - Amani Nature Reserve

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The Amani Nature Reserve was created to protect the unique, biologically important sub-montane forest ecosystem of Tanzania’s East Usambara Mountains. The biosphere reserve covers an area of about 83,600 hectares, and is home to a number of human settlements as well as unique and endemic biodiversity. These communities have been actively engaged in the management of the reserve since its establishment in 1997: two community representatives currently sit on the Amani Nature Reserve Advisory Board.
The high dependency of local people on the natural resources found in the area was the main obstacle to Amani’s goal of conserving this unique fragment of rainforest. The reserve’s management board has therefore developed a strategy focusing on developing alternative, non-consumptive uses of the natural resources in the area and income-generating activities, such as ecotourism, beekeeping, and fish and butterfly farming. The Equator Initiative brings together the United Nations, governments, civil society, businesses and grassroots organizations to recognize and advance local sustainable development solutions for people, nature and resilient communities. As local and indigenous groups across the world chart a path towards sustainable development, the Equator Prize--issued biennially by the Equator Initiative--shines a spotlight on their efforts by honoring them on an international stage. This project was awarded the Equator Prize in recognition of its contribution to local sustainable development solutions.

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