Payment for Environmental Services in the Atlantic Rainforest


Financial sustainability of protected areas is always a challenge in developing countries. In this project, CSF developed a methodology to implement a Payment for Environmental Services (PES) system focused on water conservation for human consumption in the Atlantic Forest of Brazil. This payment system approach is supported by the 47th and 48th articles of the Brazilian National System of Conservation Units Law (which goes by the Portuguese acronym SNUC), which aim to generate income for protected areas management. The project study area was the Guapiaçu and Macacu rivers basin in Três Picos State Park, close to Rio de Janeiro city. This basin provides water for about 1.7 million people.

Our analysis was developed in five phases:
(1) quantification of park management expenditures needed to ensure protected of water resources;
(2) an estimate of the protected area’s contribution to the water supply within the basin;
(3) analysis of alternative criteria for allocating park protection costs among water users;
4) estimated payments for different users, based on these criteria; and
(5) a proposed institutional arrangement to govern the payment for environmental services system.

For more information, please see the Policy Brief and full report posted on this site.