When organizations with aligned goals collaborate, opportunities arise for both to expand their services and extend their reach. That’s why WHC is joining forces with The Earth Lab (TEL), a Mexico City-based consulting group that specializes in the development and third-party certification of environmental projects. The new partnership aims to supercharge the environmental work that both groups are already doing throughout the Americas, by enabling TEL to work biodiversity into their services and by providing WHC with new opportunities for transcreation.
The Right Partnership at the Right Time
In its 30+ years of supporting and recognizing conservation efforts on corporate lands, WHC has worked with companies in Mexico and throughout Central and South America, including CEMEX, General Motors and Bayer, among others. “Our important work in this region has been successful due in no small part to the collaboration with these companies and the communities they operate in,” said Sara Cook, Director, WHC. “A partnership with TEL was a logical next step to developing more positive and meaningful impacts in the region by providing culturally and regionally relevant resources.”
Since 2006, TEL has helped organizations throughout Mexico develop and implement over 250 sustainable development projects, many of which have obtained certification in carbon neutrality or sustainable design. Currently, TEL works with organizations in the Americas and Europe to expand into new areas, and to help their partners do the same, with a goal to strengthen the link between businesses, communities and environmental causes.
Focus Area: Ejidos
A main focus of TEL’s work involves supporting the sustainability goals of ejidos (communally operated agriculture ventures that make up over half of Mexico’s territory). With financial and legal assurance from Ban.CO2 de Carbono Mestizo (BCO2M) and operational support from TEL, ejidos throughout Mexico are carefully managing their lands with the purpose of selling carbon credits. By linking these collectives to WHC’s technical resources and helping them achieve WHC Conservation Certification®, TEL hopes to enhance this land stewardship even further. Ejido lands are located throughout the country, so the partnership will allow WHC and TEL to support the conservation of a variety of ecosystems — from coastal mangroves that are home to jaguars, coastal birds and reef species to northern pine forests that shelter and provide food for coyotes, owls and rattlesnakes. Jorge Calderon, Founder and Director, TEL, said, “Though our collaborative work in these regions, we aim to become pioneers in joint conservation projects for endangered species.”
Focus Area: Biodiversity Data Collection
While Mexico only covers about 1% of the earth’s landmass, it accounts for 10% of the planet’s biodiversity, making it a crucial area for conservation. With few public conservation lands and a lack of monitoring at the species and ecosystem levels, it has been challenging to track biodiversity and biodiversity loss. In response, communities have started to collecting data with plans to compile the information into a larger biodiversity registry. With decades of experience capturing rigorous conservation data on private lands, WHC is well-equipped to support this pursuit.
Focus Area: Habitat Connectivity
Habitat connectivity is another growing concern in Mexico. Calderon said, “One of the main challenges is fragmentation caused by the expansion of urban centers,” but that wildlife corridors and connectivity initiatives are becoming more common. The U.S.–Mexico border is also host to many biodiversity hotspots, and parts of Mexico provide important overwintering habitat for species like the monarch butterfly, underscoring the needs for organizations in the two countries to work together. By sharing ideas, talents and resources, WHC and TEL are ready to heed this call.
For more information on the TEL and WHC partnership, please contact:
- Sara Cook, Sr. Manager, Conservation Strategy, WHC, email@example.com
- Nubia Valles, COO, TEL, firstname.lastname@example.org | email@example.com