Partnering for the Benefit of People and Wildlife

  • It is important to ensure equitable participation of local communities in snow leopard conservation planning and management. This should include the creation of culturally and socially responsible economic and other incentives that ensure conserving snow leopards also has a positive impact on communities.
  • Community-based, science-led conservation efforts are critical. Therefore it is important that policies and laws provide a state-sanctioned, preferably legal basis for the involvement of local communities in active conservation efforts.
  • In addition to reducing and offsetting economic losses due to conservation and human-wildlife conflicts, making wildlife conservation beneficial for local communities is an important need for effective snow leopard conservation.
  • Intensifying global economic linkages and national needs for economic development are accelerating the human footprint within snow leopard habitat. A closer engagement of range countries and conservation organizations with industry to devise ways of minimizing and offsetting the negative impacts of economic development on snow leopard habitats and biodiversity is urgently needed. Industry can also become a key partner in facilitating ecologically sustainable economic development of local communities.
  • Conservation success is contingent upon building robust partnerships among local communities (and their leaders), governments, and decision-makers, conservationists, organizations, and the wider public. Governments could play a key role in creating an enabling environment where cooperation and entrepreneurialism can flourish, and sources of funding are made available for sustaining action at all levels.
  • Payment for Ecosystem Services schemes, such as carbon credits, could be an important mechanism for snow leopard conservation.

These principles are addressed under the themes of the Bishkek Declaration related to engaging local communities in conservation, including promoting sustainable livelihoods and addressing human-wildlife conflict, engaging industry, and building awareness.