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Mainstreaming community-based conservation in a transboundary mountain landscape: lessons from Kangchenjunga

The people living in the Kangchenjunga landscape ─ shared by Bhutan, India, and Nepal ─ are economically, physically and socially vulnerable. The majority of the rural population living in the landscape depend on forest resources for their subsistance livelihoods, as commercial resources remain beyond their reach because of difficulties in access, high prices and limited supplies. This publication draws recommendations for transboundary and participatory biodiversity conservation from the Kangchenjunga Conservation Landscape Initiative. The paper recommends that countries should consider including potential community conserved areas within their system of protected areas, and enact national legislation to give community-based institutions legitimate rights over natural resources and ensure the participation of poor and marginalised groups in biodiversity management. It also suggests that Bhutan, India and Nepal adopt a formal framework for dealing with transboundary issues.