The formalization of conservation agreements includes a participatory landscaping process in which municipalities must provide information such as data from satellite and aerial photographs and other geo-referenced sources to identify land boundaries, types of land use, and possible definition of sustainable land use regimes. Social mapping is an essential tool for farmers to be able to visualize these regulations for farms, exchange knowledge and agree on agricultural planning that best reflects their vision of their territory and well-being. The conservation agreements have been included in Colombia`s development plan, which sets targets for the number of new families benefiting from them. The methodology has been applied to regional environmental authorities and the Department of Guaviare has integrated it as a key instrument to promote conservation and sustainable use on its territory. The Colombian government recently announced the national commitment to net zero deforestation by 2030. This means not only reducing deforestation, but also increasing the restoration of degraded areas. Conservation agreements, designed and signed with local communities, will contribute to these goals, while strengthening the region`s natural and social capital. With the success of the conservation agreements, the ASL project will continue to help farmers move to sustainable forest exploitation and will develop knowledge resources, such as the recent comparative analysis of conservation agreements in the Amazon, to support the effective use of conservation agreements in the region. As part of the project, farmers agreed to preserve their land as stagnant forests, pledging non-deforestation to restore degraded areas, develop agroforestry projects and enable sustainable logging. This is based on voluntary agreements that offer legal landowners and de facto a number of benefits that depend on certain conservation measures or outcomes. The direct link between sustainable practices and an external flow of monetary and non-monetary benefits makes it possible to transform maintenance into an economically attractive choice.
Technical assistance is provided to improve plant production, sustainable agriculture, forest management, adaptation to climate change and the marketing of wood and unforestryed forest products after the agreement is signed. Women have been actively involved in decision-making – the decision-making process, they sign agreements with their husbands. The results and compliance with agreements are tracked every six months in a geo-referenced database and platform called MosCal. The commitment and efforts of local communities, as well as an inter-institutional coordination approach, have protected more than 11,000 hectares and other important outcomes listed in the infographic below.