Conservation and Sustainable Use of Biodiversity in India

Project description

Title: Conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in India
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: India
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC)
Overall term: 2012 to 2020



With 2.4 per cent of global land area, India is home to nearly 7 per cent of the planet’s recorded species. A growing human population, rapid economic growth and industrialisation add pressure to India's biodiversity. The conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services are vital national priorities as they are linked to India’s economic, ecological and social well-being.


The project has increased the awareness among a wide range of stakeholders both public and private about approaches towards the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. This includes the conservation and management of forests, inland wetlands, coastal and marine ecosystems, bio-resources, and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of biodiversity. 


GIZ is working with its partners to support four important initiatives to encourage the sustainable management of biodiversity and ecosystems.

The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) India Initiative assessed the economic value of biodiversity and ecosystem services for mainstreaming as factors in development planning and decision-making. It carried out 12 field-based primary assessments of biodiversity and ecosystems with relevance for policymakers.

The India Business and Biodiversity Initiative (IBBI) promotes the mainstreaming of sustainable biodiversity management into businesses and across their value chain. It serves as a national platform for businesses and other stakeholders to pursue dialogue, share ideas and learn from each other. 

The Himachal Pradesh Forest Ecosystem Services (HP-FES) project sensitises the State Forest Department and local communities in the pilot sites about the Forest Ecosystem Services (FES) approach. It helps improve biodiversity and enhances flow of FES, providing long-term development potential for the rural population, and people benefit directly from FES.

The Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) Partnership project strengthens the National Biodiversity Authority, State Biodiversity Boards of Maharashtra, Uttarakhand and Tamil Nadu and selected Biodiversity Management Committees. It creates awareness among commercial users of bio-resources and associated traditional knowledge for the effective implementation of ABS mechanisms under the Biological Diversity Act 2002.



TEEB India Initiative recommendations were integrated into India’s Wetlands (Conservation and Management) Rules 2017 and the National Policy on Marine Fisheries 2017. A forum involving Brazil, India and Germany was established, where these countries can share experiences and lessons learned from their TEEB initiatives. 

MoEFCC has endorsed IBBI as the national initiative for business and biodiversity. 38 companies have joined IBBI with a combined annual turnover of 110 billion Euros in 2019 (4 per cent of India’s GDP). 25 per cent of members have developed explicit Biodiversity Policy and 70 per cent have integrated biodiversity into their Environment, Health and Safety Policy. IBBI has joined the Global Partnership for Business and Biodiversity established by Covention on Biological Diversity.

The ABS-Monitoring System, an IT-enabled tool, was developed to track the use of Indian bio-resources and was launched by the Indian Vice President in 2019. The project developed: 

  • ABS good practice case studies on the use of bio-resources from forests, agriculture, and animal-based derivatives; 
  • a communication strategy for 10 key stakeholders; 
  • sector-specific guidance documents for ABS compliance in five different sectors.

A Long-Term Ecological Monitoring framework to ensure the flow of ecosystem services was developed for Himachal Pradesh. Zone-wise management of FES in nine sites will benefit more than 7,700 people (about 3,900 of them women). The project supported the integration of the FES approach in the Solan Forest Divisional Working Plan as per India’s National Working Plan Code, 2014.