Editor Rudolf de Groot
Forest conservation and restoration using eco-loan financing (ELF) in Costa Rica: report on a working model
Article first published online: 22 AUG 2011
©2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Volume 4, Issue 5, pages 402–407, October/November 2011
How to Cite
Lennette, E. T., Villa, L. V., Chaves, R. V., Villalobos, M. E. and Viquez, A. U. (2011), Forest conservation and restoration using eco-loan financing (ELF) in Costa Rica: report on a working model. Conservation Letters, 4: 402–407. doi: 10.1111/j.1755-263X.2011.00193.x
- Issue published online: 3 OCT 2011
- Article first published online: 22 AUG 2011
- Accepted manuscript online: 13 JUL 2011 07:28PM EST
- Received , 25 March 2011, Accepted, 26 June 2010
- community water associations;
- tropical cloud forest regeneration;
- watershed restoration
Nectandra Institute, a small U.S. nonprofit organization based on private philanthropy, initiated a zero (monetary) interest loan program (Eco-Loan Financing, or ELF) to qualifying rural community water management associations to buy watershed land in northern Costa Rica. Each borrowing community repays the capital and eco-interest (e.g., reforestation, regeneration of native forest on the properties, watershed restoration and management, continuing environmental education, etc). The project's effectiveness since 2007 in achieving its conservation and education objectives was due to: (1) the facility and flexibility of the negotiations between borrowers (entire communities) and lender (conservation promoter), (2) the communities’ involvement and enthusiastic acceptance of the project's ecosystem conservation insured its post-loan continuance at the grassroots level, (3) the rapid reloaning of repaid capital fund, thereby amplifying the donors’ investment several times, and (4) the potential for its replication and scalability elsewhere in Central America.