UNIQUE Forestry and Land Use

UNIQUE strives for the development and implementation of intelligent and environmentally sound land use practices and policies that form the basis for sustainable rural development. Since our establishment in 1998, we have carried out over 500 projects in more than 60 countries. UNIQUE’s clients include private companies, public institutions, non-governmental organizations, and multilateral organizations.

In Latin America, UNIQUE carried out Forest and Landscape Restoration (FLR) activities in Argentina, Costa Rica, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, and Peru, working with a number of different actors. UNIQUE provides technical advice on productive, sustainable land use, including the management of 13,600 hectares of FSC certified forests in Paraguay. In collaboration with a German investor, UNIQUE has recently established a joint venture in Paraguay that will invest in enrichment planting in degraded forests and silvopastoral systems. UNIQUE is also a technical service provider for the Danone-initiated Livelihoods Funds since 2010, focusing on mangrove restoration, agroforestry and efficient family farm production. Partnering with Finance in Motion, UNIQUE has established the Arbaro Fund, which will channel financing to forestry investments in Latin America. UNIQUE also works with Finance in Motion to reduce deforestation risk associated with the eco.business Fund in Ecuador and Peru. On an analytical level, UNIQUE works to better understand the impacts of FLR, for example, by developing and rolling out methodologies to quantify the carbon and water benefits of FLR in Mexico. UNIQUE is also active in the policy space, supporting governments and development organizations to define their FLR strategy.

Among other opportunities, most immediately UNIQUE would like to engage with Initiative 20x20 on private sector and investment issues related to FLR. UNIQUE manages an Investment Accelerator, supported by the Packard Foundation and USAID, which develops FLR investment projects and matches them to investors seeking sustainable land use investments. Additionally, UNIQUE is the investment advisor of the Forestry and Climate Change Fund (FCCF), an impact investment fund that invests in secondary forest management. Finally, UNIQUE is planning to start a new initiative on “Upscaling of private FLR Investments in Latin America”, focusing on Paraguay and El Salvador.