What went right this week: a plan to save rhinos, and more positive news

Launch of a first-of-its-kind conservation initiative

Years of poaching has pushed South Africa’s black rhinos to the brink. Could a new conservation initiative be the catalyst to turn the tide?

The scheme, launched by the World Bank, brings the principles of corporate finance to wildlife conservation, in the form of a $150m five-year ‘rhino bond’.

The bond will pay for rhino protection and investors will receive a return on their investment IfThe population grows. They will also receive their investment back within five years. This would be covered by donors. Investors may lose their investment if numbers fall. 

This scheme represents a revolutionary approach to conservation finance because it passes risk to investors while allowing donors to fund successful conservation outcomes. It remains to be seen if investors will accept the risk.

Dr Andrew Terry of the Zoological Society of London, which helped develop the bond, said its launch was “a watershed moment for wildlife conservation”. 

Image: David Clode