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Through programs and actions, local communities can significantly impact the environment. This can be done by establishing sustainable enterprises that help individuals and communities protect and enhance biodiversity.

Most threats to cultural heritage and conservation values have an economic basis. These include overfishing, deforestation, pollution, desertification, poaching, and urban encroachment. Because all of these have human elements, they can be controlled. Here’s how building a better community can be done through conservation efforts:

Protecting Your Community’s Investment

Since many communities live near protected areas, they are already relying on natural resources for their food, shelter, and energy needs. Unfortunately, even low-level use can negatively affect ecosystems and wildlife populations.

In addition, using natural resources can be very exploitative, especially regarding specific commodities, such as ivory and bush meat, commonly sold on the black market. Instead of exploiting their natural resources, local communities can protect their conservation values by developing sustainable businesses. This can help them sustain their livelihoods and improve the quality of life for their communities.

Through the establishment of conservation enterprises, local communities can also protect and enhance biodiversity. This can help them improve their quality of life and prevent environmental threats.

Uplifting Marginalized and Vulnerable Groups

It is widely believed that women’s participation in decision-making and economic development can positively impact their communities and the environment. Women’s participation in the economic development of local communities can also help decrease poverty. Through the establishment of conservation enterprises, local communities can improve their quality of life and ward off environmental threats.

People with mental and physical disabilities can also benefit from the creation of conservation enterprises. These individuals have traditionally been excluded from the formal economy, and having paid jobs can help improve their status and increase their participation in local decision-making.

Access to Ethical Goods and Services

Being socially responsible is an excellent business opportunity right now.

The Purpose Premium Index of 2018 revealed that a third of consumers prefer to purchase goods and services from socially responsible companies. Also, the Institute of Business Value reported that conscious consumers are prepared to pay a premium for products made from sustainable materials.

Through the establishment of conservation enterprises, local communities can also protect their environment and improve their quality of life. These organizations can then produce unique products and services for conscious consumers. There is a need for ethical goods and services to meet consumers’ demands. Also, other companies can see that these organizations are succeeding.

Gaining Political Support

One of the most effective ways to protect ecosystems and natural capital is by establishing protected areas. However, the expansion of these areas can be very controversial. This is due to the belief that it will restrict economic activity.

Despite the positive effects of establishing protected areas, economists still need to fall back on the argument that ecosystem services should be valued in the economy. However, this is only sometimes the case. If communities are against the protection of natural capital and ecosystems, then it’s another reason why governments should not allocate land for conservation.