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Promoting Natural Resources Stewardship

NatuReS’ mission is empowering diverse stakeholders to work together towards inclusive and resilient economic growth.

To achieve this, NatuReS focuses on four working areas:

In each of these areas, the programme engages in several key activities, including:

  • Supporting multi-stakeholder partnerships to address natural resource-related risks
  • Promoting stewardship among all actors
  • Sharing knowledge with stakeholders on the inter-connectedness of the environment, economy and society, and the benefits of holistic, resilience-oriented solutions
  • Developing innovative, locally tailored, multi-stakeholder approaches to increase participation and economic development
  • Training and building capacity to encourage strong local ownership and an anchoring of stewardship in institutional practices and public policy
  • Acting as ‘third-party’ support between governmental, business and community groups

Stewardship Activities

NatuReS’ working areas address several threats for natural resources.

Some of our key stewardship activities include:

Stewardship for Resilient Cities

Kampala from above. Copyright: GIZ/Jesper Anhede

Cities and densely populated settlements, especially in emerging economies, offer huge opportunities for change. Though economic powerhouses, they often lack the resilience and strategies to reduce the risks of natural resource shortages and climate change.

NatuReS seeks to advance the governance and enabling context on natural resources security and thus also the economic resilience in cities. Its tool set includes:

  • Development of case studies
  • Application of analytical planning tools
  • Promotion of decision-making instruments
  • Promotion of natural resources stewardship

Stewardship for Resilient Economic Zones and Industrial Parks

Wastewater treatment plant in Dar es Salaam

Tooku Garment LTD pre-treatment plant at the Benjamin William Mkapa Special Economic Zone, Dar es Salaam. Copyright: EPZA

Many emerging economies and developing countries invest in special economic zones and industrial parks to boost their manufacturing and agricultural potential. However, as most industries heavily rely on water, their activities can lead to overuse and the discharge of untreated wastewater. These environmental risks not only affect adjacent populations, but can also lead to operational and supplier disruptions, higher production costs, brand damage and reduced investments.

To reduce these risks, on an institutional level, NatuReS seeks to embed water and natural resources stewardship principles into national and regional standards, as well as in the governance framework of economic zones and industrial parks.

At site level, the programme seeks to demonstrate how global standards on sustainable resource use could be applied for more climate resilience, healthier surrounding communities and a more sustainable, productive economic output.

Examples for stewardship partnerships promoting resilient economic zones and industrial parks are: 

Stewardship for Resilient Circular Economies

PET bottles collected for recycling in Kampala, Uganda

Recycling hubs are still rare in many countries. Copyright: GIZ/Vanessa Tyaba

Across the globe, there is a major challenge to a sustainable, ‘green’ economy: the environmental impacts and costs linked to the production and consumption of goods are not given sufficient attention. There is, however, a significant potential for improvement. According to the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), the global circular economy presents a $4.5 trillion USD opportunity to boost GDP.

NatuReS seeks to improve specific product value chains – such as the plastic waste value chain – via a circular economy that helps safeguard jobs and investments. By focusing on partnerships that use learning resources and evidence-based methods, the programme makes it easier for stakeholders to adopt circular economy approaches.

Stewardship for Resilient Catchments

Recovering waste materials for reuse, Photo: Jesper Anhede
Catchment areas are increasingly threatened. Copyright: GIZ/Jesper Anhede

Threatened or degraded natural resources often lead to negative impacts on economic development – both within and beyond a catchment area. As such, some risks are best handled through an integrated approach involving both upstream and downstream water users.

NatuReS seeks to improve the state of critically threatened catchments by increasing the capacity to identify and address risks at a governmental, business and community level. Key goals include:

  • Creating and supporting partnerships to have access to best practices
  • Improving coordination among stakeholders
  • Implementing effective enforcement of rules and regulations among all users

Read more about the stewardship approach for resilient catchments here.