Sunday, January 8, 2012

Malua BioBank makes forest conservation a commercially competitive land use…

The Malua BioBank is a unique public-private partnership for investing in forest conservation. “Public and philanthropic funding for conservation has not kept pace with the rate of biodiversity loss. Attaching value to conservation will harness private sector finance to help fill this funding gap,” according

The site is the 34,000 ha Malua Forest Reserve in Sabah, Malaysia. Sitting adjacent to one of the region’s last pristine lowland tropical rainforests, the Malua BioBank provides a buffer between virgin rainforest and oil palm plantations. The area is home to one of the world’s highest concentrations of orangutans, as well as clouded leopards and pygmy elephants.

The Sabah government has licensed conservation rights for 50 years to the Malua BioBank and a private investor has committed up to $10 million for the rehabilitation of the Malua Forest Reserve. The investor is the Eco Products Fund, a private equity investment vehicle jointly managed by New Forests and Equator Environmental.

You can purchase Biodiversity Conservation Certificates
to support rainforest conservation at

The Malua BioBank sells Biodiversity Conservation Certificates, with each certificate representing 100 square meters of forest restoration and protection. Revenues generated from the sale of BCC’s will be used to recover costs incurred and to endow a trust fund set up to manage the Malua BioBank. Any profit will be shared between the forest management license holder (a foundation established by the government to improve the livelihoods of local citizens) and the investor.

The government has committed to halting logging in the Malua Forest Reserve for the next 50 years. This agreement commits the government to implementing a management plan under the monitoring of the Malua Trust, which will be funded by revenues from BCC sales.

“The ultimate aim of the Malua BioBank is to shift land use towards rainforest restoration and preservation, catalyzing a new economy of conservation. The sale of certificates will make rainforest rehabilitation and conservation a commercially competitive land use,” according to