Guatemala, U.S. forge debt-for-nature swap


Guatemala and the United States this month announced the biggest debt-for-nature swap ever granted under the U.S. Tropical Forest Conservation Act, the 1998 law that allows debt relief for developing nations in return for conservation commitments. The deal will generate a total of US$24.4 million for Guatemalan conservation efforts. Instead of making payments on five outstanding loans from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Guatemala will place the money into a special fund aimed at bolstering protection of four critical bioregions. Those regions are the Maya Biosphere Reserve, Central America’s most extensive and biologically rich protected area; the densely populated volcanic chain in the country’s western highlands; the Cuchumatanes mountain range in northwestern Guatemala; and the Polochic and Motagua river basins... [Log in to read more]

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