For the past two years, the Ecosystem Marketplace has been delivering the latest information about market mechanisms and payments for ecosystem services such as carbon sequestration, water quality, and biodiversity. To get a better sense of how the concepts of environmental markets, market-like mechanisms and payments for ecosystem services are likely to impact communities in developing countries, the Ecosystem Marketplace has collected stories from two regions: Latin America and East and Southern Africa. In these stories we see the new and innovative ways that the value of nature’s services is being accounted for—all emphasizing the strengths of each region’s diverse ecosystems and the challenges that face the people who live among them.
In this booklet, we hope to spotlight the uniqueness of each region through a series of feature articles, profiles of environmental leaders, and personal perspectives. Our hope is that by putting these stories together, we may be able to start making some unusual—but fruitful—connections in this nascent field.