USAID and Governors’ Climate & Forests Task Force sign memorandum of understanding

The partnership will identify and catalyze new sustainable opportunities with local governments, civil society, private sector, and traditional communities in the Amazon

Brasilia, March 21: The U.S. government, through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Governors’ Task Force on Climate and Forests (GCF) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote sustainable development and biodiversity conservation in the Amazon on Thursday (March 17). USAID has participated in the Task Force meetings for over a year and this signing formalizes the partnership.

“Combating climate change is a central aspect of our deep and long-standing relationship with Brazil. This MOU will help us find new ways to work together to support Brazil’s efforts to protect its natural resources and national treasures. Our decades of cooperation on climate make us ideal partners to continue the work through this new agreement, and we are grateful to the GCF for its proactive approach to addressing this challenge,” said Douglas Koneff, Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. Embassy and Consulates.

The document was signed during the 12th GCF Annual Meeting, in Manaus, by USAID/Brazil Director Ted Gehr and the Task Force President and Governor of Amazonas State, Wilson Lima. The goal of the partnership is to identify and catalyze new opportunities for sustainable development with local governments, civil society, the private sector, and traditional communities in the Amazon. The agreement will allow increased collaboration among the participating institutions, and promote exchange of experience, innovation, and conservation strategies for the Amazon.

“We are delighted to make this new partnership official, demonstrating our commitment to supporting local initiatives that protect the forest. We will be effectively catalyzing new opportunities for local people that generate improved livelihoods and conserve biodiversity,” said Ted Gehr.

“It is important that USAID is joining in our proposal to find and build ways to conserve nature, but above all to fight poverty. We have highlighted that the partnership must be conducted with those who reside here, and USAID is doing that. I am honored as president of the GCF to bring one more partner to this process of defense of the Amazon,” said Wilson Lima.

In the coming months the organizations will form a working group to further define the activities proposed in the memorandum. The GCF group will allow all involved to share diverse perspectives and expertise in search of solutions to the complex issues in the Amazon.

About USAID/Brazil:

USAID has a long history of collaboration with Brazilian partners. Since 2014 it has implemented the Partnership for Biodiversity Conservation in the Amazon (PCAB), which aims to ensure the integrity and conservation of the Amazon ecosystem while improving the well-being and economic situation of traditional and rural communities living in the Amazon region.

About the Task Force:

The GCF and a subnational task force of 38 states and provinces working to protect tropical forests, reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and promote realistic pathways to forest-maintaining rural development.