Tea estates being semi-natural plantations can play a major role in the conservation of biodiversity. In many countries some 20% of the land cover within tea estates is under natural vegetation or plantation forestry. Since carbon capture, crops pollination, pest control, biodiversity and soil and water conservation are just some of the services provided by natural ecosystems, protecting natural ecosystems and conducting activities to restore degraded ecosystems become crucial in ensuring healthy agricultural systems. Bioregional approaches integrate land use planning with natural systems combining biophysical aspects such as land, water, flora and fauna together with socio-economic and local community needs.
Dilmah, a leading international tea company, is pilot testing a bio-regional initiative in Sri Lanka, integrating its land holdings with national protected area systems and corridors in a series of sites demonstrating enhanced connectivity and benefit flows.
The session aims to answer questions such as:
- How can the private sector be a catalyst for large scale landscape conservation?
- How can the private sector work with governments and civil society in this regard?
- How can local communities benefit both directly and indirectly from such initiatives?
- Is it good risk management and therefore good for business?