Nepal—USAID Biodiversity

Client: U.S. Agency for International Development

Duration: 2022-2027

Region: Asia and the Pacific

Country: Nepal

Solutions: Environment Climate

From the high altitude, snow-capped Himalayan mountains in the north, through the Churia midhill regions, to the Terai plains in the south, Nepal’s diverse landscapes provide habitat for iconic species such as the snow leopard and river dolphin, and vital natural resources for the country’s inhabitants. Nepal’s freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems sustain the health, well-being, and economic prosperity of diverse ethnic groups, whose cultures are also inextricably linked to nature. The confluence of two rivers, for example, is frequently the site of Hindu temples with spiritual significance.

Despite the critical importance of Nepal’s ecosystems, exploitation and environmental degradation continues at an unrelenting rate. Sand mining in rivers degrades freshwater habitats and increases flood risk. Climate change exacerbates these threats, intensifying risks from floods and droughts while affecting food security, agricultural productivity, migration patterns, and disaster risk.

USAID Biodiversity works to reduce threats to ecosystems and species, conserve nature, and enhance human well-being. Working in the Gandaki and Karnali river basins, the activity focuses on improving ecosystem health, advancing environmental and social safeguards, promoting climate resilience, and addressing environmental crime in Nepal. We work with the Government of Nepal, civil society groups, local communities, and private sector actors, contributing to an emerging multidonor collaboration that supports Nepal’s green, inclusive, and resilient development.

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Sample Activities

  • Strengthen natural resource governance capacity at municipal and provincial levels.
  • Improve community management of freshwater and forest resources.
  • Improve management and connectivity of conservation areas and reduce human-wildlife conflict.
  • Bolster enforcement and prosecution of environmental crimes.
  • Support national climate change planning and implementation.
  • Engage the private sector to increase finance for adaptation.


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