Conservationists Propose “Global Conservation Basic Income” To Safeguard Biodiversity

WCS Newsroom

Publishing in the journal Nature Sustainability, a team of conservationists led by the Wildlife Conservation Society say that providing a “Conservation Basic Income” (CBI) – of $5.50 per day to all residents of protected areas in low- and middle-income countries would cost less than annual subsidies given to fossil fuels and other environmentally harmful industries.

CBI is an unconditional cash payment to individuals, similar to universal basic income (UBI)10 but targeting residents of important conservation areas. A Conversation Basic Income would support stewardship of land and biodiversity by Indigenous Peoples and local communities.

The authors provided the first global estimates for the gross costs of CBI using spatial analyses of three plausible future conservation scenarios. Gross costs vary widely, depending on the areas and populations included as well as the payment amounts: from $351 billion to $6.73 trillion annually.

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