biodiversity

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Watershed Moments in the Mara

New Beginnings in Transboundary Water Cooperation

Winding for nearly 14,000 kilometers, the Mara River is a vital source of life in Kenya and Tanzania. The river traverses the towering Mau Forest, wanders through tea plantations and growing settlements in the upper Basin, and waters the rangelands of Maasai pastoral communities. The river also sustains the region’s stunning biodiversity, from forest ecosystems to the wildebeests migrating between Serengeti National Park and Maasai Mara National Reserve.

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Biodiversity Hotspots

The Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) focuses on biodiversity hotspots​, Earth’s most biologically rich and threatened areas.

The 36 biodiversity hotspots hold especially high numbers of unique species, yet their combined area now covers only 2.3 percent of the Earth's land surface. Many encompass priority areas in multiple countries. Each one faces extreme threats and has lost at least 70 percent of its original habitat.

Activity

Support Program for Economic and Enterprise Development Plus

USAID’s Supporting the Policy Environment for Economic Development (SPEED+) project will provide expert technical services to the Government of Mozambique to support economic and structural reform in the areas of agriculture, trade, business enabling environment, energy, water and biodiversity conservation. It will also promote the areas of improved fiscal transparency, tax policy and economic and environmental governance. SPEED+ will provide expert technical assistance and training for public sector institutions and civil society organizations at the national and local levels.

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Transboundary Water for Biodiversity and Human Health in the Mara River Basin

The TWB-MRB project was a collaborative effort between Florida International University (FIU), WWF Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Programme Office (WWF-ESARPO), World Vision International, CARE Tanzania, and the Mara River Water Resource Users Association (MRWUA) to support numerous governmental and local partners in the development and implementation of a basin-scale integrated water resources management plan in the trans-boundary Mara River Basin of Kenya and Tanzania. The project began in October of 2005 and extended through September of 2012.

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Investing in Water and Natural Resource Management

Water is a vital resource not just for humans, but also for a variety of aquatic ecosystems, including wetlands, watersheds, rivers, estuaries and coastal areas. The misuse and over-exploitation of water resources is hastening their degradation, and threatening human settlements and the natural resources they depend on.

Implementation Guide

USAID Biodiversity and Development Handbook - Chapter 4.6: Water Resources

The 2015 USAID Biodiversity and Development Handbook is a foundational resource for implementation of USAID’s Biodiversity Policy. 

Chapter Four of USAID's Biodiversity and Development Handbook contains sections that are a primer on integration of biodiversity into key development sectors. Chapter 4.6 is focused on the intersection of biodiversity conservation and water resources. The following topics are covered: