Legacy Landscapes Fund (LLF) works to protect the world’s most outstanding natural places – our legacy landscapes – in perpetuity.
In 2020, LLF was established as an independent charitable foundation under German law. It is a joint initiative by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), KfW Development Bank (KfW), Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Campaign for Nature (CfN), Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS), the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).
LLF was founded to address the biodiversity financing gap by sourcing significant and sustained funding from both public and private donors, thus contributing to conserving biodiversity within a post-2020 framework under the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD). LLF focuses on supporting professional partnerships between experienced NGOs and protected area authorities (or custodians of the land), as well as indigenous and local communities with the goal of managing terrestrial conservation areas effectively and sustainably.
- Our vision is a global network of sustainably funded and effectively managed conservation areas helping to halt the dramatic loss of biodiversity in outstanding legacy landscapes.
- Our mission is to safeguard biodiversity by promoting nature conservation and the preservation of ecosystem services in globally significant conservation areas, while working with local communities and respecting their rights and needs. In collaboration with a wide range of partners and funders, and acknowledging international best practices, LLF provides long-term financial support to globally significant legacy landscapes.
- Our goal is to secure significant funding (USD one billion sinking plus endowment fund) from both public and private sources. That will allow us to finance a global, diversified portfolio of 30+ of the world’s most relevant biodiversity assets by 2030.
The loss of biological diversity has become a top global risk that endangers the health and future of humanity and all life on earth. One million species are threatened with extinction. Every day, about 150 species of plants and animals disappear. Every year, ten million hectares of forest are lost – that’s one football field every four seconds. Habitat loss and degradation are the main drivers of biodiversity loss. Less habitat for wildlife also heightens the risk of viruses spreading from animals to humans. About 75% of new infectious diseases are zoonoses, with COVID–19 the most recent tragic example.
By protecting nature, we also tackle the climate crisis. Terrestrial ecosystems such as forests and peatlands store significant amounts of carbon, thus mitigating the effects of climate change. When nature is intact, it provides free services such as clean air, fresh water, and fertile soil. These services are the basis of most people’s livelihoods and are directly linked to human well-being around the world.
Scientists recommend that 30% of the earth’s surface be placed in effectively managed conservation areas – with the involvement of local populations. Financial constraints are the principal obstacle to conserving a significant share of biodiversity on earth and leaving a vital legacy for future generations. This is especially true in developing countries, where much of the world’s biodiversity is found. Many protected areas in these regions have insufficient or no financial resources to secure their efficient management. In fact, although 75% of the world’s most biodiverse places are in developing and emerging countries, just 19% of the world’s annual funding for protected areas is allocated there. Where there is funding, it is often short-term, project-based, and inadequate to cover investments and recurrent costs. This funding gap is a major barrier to effective biodiversity conservation in the Global South.