Nature-Based Solutions Origination Platform


WWF's Nature-Based Solutions Origination Platform (NbS-OP) is an innovative vehicle to drive impact at scale for people, climate, and nature across selected tropical forest landscapes. Supporting a variety of conservation approachesincluding protection, improved management, and restorationthe NbS-OP aims to generate quantifiable results in priority landscapes powered by blended finance and shift the global market for transparent, high-quality nature-based solutions (NbS). The NbS-OP will focus on five initial landscapes: the Atlantic Forest (Brazil); the Central Annamites (Viet Nam); Madre de Dios (Peru); the Northern Highlands/Diana (Madagascar); and the Yucatán Peninsula (Mexico).

Atlantic Forest, Brazil


The latest science and increased attention to the interlinked crises of global warming, biodiversity loss, and human health have triggered unprecedented interest in NbS. Nature is fundamental to human survival and economic prosperity, yet there remains an estimated $700 billion-$970 billion annual funding gap to maintain nature and biodiversity.i If the world is to meet its climate, biodiversity, and land degradation targets, investment in NbS must at least triple in real terms by 2030 and increase fourfold by 2050.

Nature's climate mitigation potential has been especially overlooked: NbS in the land sector could contribute up to 37% of the climate mitigation needed by 2030 to meet the Paris Agreement’s objective of limiting global warming while supporting other societal goals such as climate change adaptation, water provisioning, livelihoods, and biodiversity conservation.ii Diverse opportunities for NbS exist on both protected and working lands, with interventions in forests, mangroves, peatlands, and silvopasture offering some of the largest potential contributions to meet twin climate and biodiversity objectives by 2030.

Additionally, businesses have started to realize their dependencies on climate and nature to secure future commodity supplies and social license to operate. As more and more companies step forward with commitments toward societal net zero—there is growing demand for investment-ready NbS portfolios that lower deforestation and land conversion, improve natural resource management, and support landscape restoration.

San Felipe, Yucatán, Mexico

    The challenges:

    Many issues in the current NbS “marketplace” risk undermining the impacts NbS promise and may even inhibit potential investors due to perceptions about the quality of supply and/or associated reputational risks. For example, voluntary carbon market projects have been criticized for inflated estimates of carbon benefits, particularly when associated credits are used to support "offsetting" or carbon neutrality claims. Others feature pricing terms that may not be consistent with principles of equitable benefit sharing with Indigenous peoples and local communities nor ensure durable conservation. While the newfound attention to NbS is urgently needed, many institutions and vehicles moving funds to the ground have not adequately aligned with fundamental best practices for nature stewardship or the mitigation hierarchy (i.e., reducing harm before seeking to compensate, addressing deforestation before prioritizing restoration). NbS interventions that are poorly designed, priced, or governed not only risk disappointing outcomes and backlash against the private sector but also present missed opportunities for transformational change when time is running out for tropical forests and other critical ecosystems. 

    The opportunity:

    Some of the challenges described here are significant. However, much of the NbS market is resistant to change and needs constructive disruption to achieve lasting impacts. A big part of the solution lies in the scale at which we plan and implement NbS. WWF and several leading environmental and Indigenous organizations recently aligned to develop the Tropical Forest Credit Integrity Guide, asserting that the vast majority of forest carbon credits in corporate portfolios should be issued from jurisdictional REDD+iii programs or fully nested projects by 2030. However, a higher-bar approach to NbS will not resonate with investors until they see concrete, on-the-ground examples that highlight the full potential of these investments—for people, for climate, and for nature—at landscape and jurisdictional levels. They need to see evidence that a higher level of integrity on the supply and demand sides is obtainable and how it compares to the cost-benefit analysis and risks associated with mainstream NbS opportunities.

    Overview of the Nature-Based Solutions Origination Platform

    WWF is establishing the Nature-Based Solutions Origination Platform (NbS-OP) to create a new model of scaling up, aligning, and mobilizing public and private investments in high-quality NbS under an integrated landscape finance approach. 

    The platform is aligned with WWF’s Forests Forward corporate engagement program, which guides businesses on everything from sourcing responsibly to supporting landscape efforts with actions like restoration and improved management. The NbS-OP will generate a supply of high-quality landscape investments (i.e., NbS that support landscape and jurisdictional strategies) and link it with diverse funding sources. The platform aims to showcase high-quality interventions that address threats and drivers efficiently; incorporate transparent and equitable governance and benefit-sharing mechanisms; and generate durable impacts for climate, biodiversity, and sustainable development.

    The NbS-OP intends to provide a strong alternative to the current NbS market, aiming to demonstrate the feasibility of delivering scaled NbS with multiple benefits. Its process reflects the following core tenets:

    • Robust benefits for nature, people, and climate, with a focus on generating benefits where they are most needed—on the ground with local stakeholders including Indigenous peoples and local communities
    • Science-based approach reflecting guidance from the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) to achieve societal net zero and the Science Based Targets Network (SBTN), currently under development, and in support of landscape and jurisdictional strategies
    • Diverse public and private long-term funding—combined and sequenced—in WWF’s chosen landscapes

    The platform is guided by the principles and approaches outlined in WWF’s blueprints for corporate action and high-quality NbS interventions.

    Read more: Beyond Science-Based Targets: A Blueprint for Corporate Action on Climate and Nature

    Read more: Beyond Carbon Credits: A Blueprint for High-Quality Interventions that Work for People, Nature and Climate

    Reserva Ecológica de Guapiaçu, Atlantic Forest, Brazil

    How It Works

    The NbS-OP has two main functions:

    • Delivering High-Quality NbS Interventions — WWF works with diverse multistakeholder coalitions to design and implement interventions in priority landscapes. In each landscape, these interventions will advance a comprehensive landscape strategy and will include a mix of protection, restoration, improved forest management, and strengthening of critical enabling conditions. Examples of interventions include aligning forest management with Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) best practices and supporting land tenure and security for Indigenous lands and local communities.
    • Securing a Sustainable Flow of Finance — WWF matches the landscape portfolio with established and new partners, including companies and other funders, to mobilize long-term sustainable funding via a combination of public and private mechanisms. Interventions and funding in each landscape will be guided by an integrated financial model for the landscape that will model costs, revenues (if applicable), and impacts in a standardized way for all funders under the platform. Engagements with corporations will follow WWF’s high-integrity standard approach and will be informed by WWF's Blueprint for Corporate Action on Climate and Nature, providing an opportunity for companies that have met due diligence requirements and demonstrated strong leadership on climate and nature. 

    Supply                   Demand

    Deal Origination

    Design, develop, and implement structures to mobilize finance for high-quality NbS interventions (landscape financial model, blended finance structures)



    NbS Origination Platform

    Transformational impact through connecting landscape origination with funding/financing, quality control of demand & supply side (e.g., technical support on approach)



    Landscape Origination

    Design, develop, and implement high-quality landscape-level NbS interventions (intervention design, scoping & baselining, costing, M&E, implementation)


    After demonstrating success in the identified priority landscapes, WWF will seek to expand to additional landscapes and beyond tropical forest ecosystems.

    Central Annamites, Viet Nam

    NbS-OP in Action

    The NbS-OP is working to leverage the growing demand among private and public entities to fund high-quality NbS and to originate and structure a cohort of high-quality NbS investments in five target landscapes.

    worldmap© shutterstock ABCDE


    In each landscape, WWF partners with government and coalitions of local stakeholders to develop tailored strategies for sustainable development; design portfolios of actions needed to implement the strategies; develop a financial model to support implementation; and mobilize a wide range of funders to power activities.

    The platform’s monitoring and evaluation framework is designed to enable transparent, effective, and consistent assessment, measurement, and reporting on the impact of interventions in alignment with the unique attributes of each landscape. The platform applies a dual-layered approach that guarantees metric consistency and comparability on an international scale while also giving due importance to the nuances and specificities of individual landscapes.

    Ambaro Bay, Ambilobe, Madagascar

    What's Next

    Team members will begin implementing priority interventions as early as next year, building on NbS activities already underway.

    Right now, our team's focus is on:

    • Completing an initial scoping phase in each landscape, including developing holistic landscape strategies and delineating portfolios of priority interventions
    • Clarifying claims guidance for companies that invest in the NbS-OP's landscape portfolio
    • Working to allocate, combine, and sequence adequate funding sources with each new commitment

    We are seeking climate leaders to partner with us, provide additional funding, and support thought leadership to raise the bar for NbS. Interested funders should contact us at [email protected].

    Iñapari, Madre de Dios, Peru

    Supporters The NbS-OP is made possible with initial support from partners, including:

    News and Updates


    i State of Finance for Nature: Tripling investments in nature-based solutions by 2030, United Nations Environment Programme, 2021.


    iii. "REDD+" refers to Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation in developing countries, as outlined in the Paris Agreement. The "+" refers to other forest-based activities that generate climate benefits, such as sustainable forest management or the conservation and enhancement of carbon stocks.