Transformation Areas

This story reflects success in the highlighted areas.

Sean Weaver: bringing ecosystem services to communities in NZ and the Pacific

Sean Weaver’s innovative work focuses on giving communities in New Zealand and the Pacific the capacity to establish, manage and expand their own ecosystem services. This includes a ‘payment for ecosystem services’ programme for Maori-owned forest.

Sean’s current projects include ecosystem programme development for the Rarakau Programme, an indigenous forest protection and carbon crediting initiative for Maori-owned forest, as well as applications of Rarakau’s success to a South Pacific indigenous forest protection programme.

For Rarakau, and beyond, Sean has developed a system of ecosystem service units that creates a quantifiable opportunity for the private sector to purchase a portfolio of ecosystem service outcomes, and do so locally. Sean has also created methodology for accounting and monitoring of indigenous forest carbon accounting that is simpler and lower-risk than previous models.

Project development for the carbon market can be an enormously costly and complex process with a vast amount of documentation. Sean’s other key innovation is the development of a document management module for the Pacific Island programmes that will take some of the grunt work out. The international land and ecosystem management charity, Plan Vivo, has recently invited him to share the module as a tool for other project developers around the world.

Sean Weaver was a finalist in the Restorative Innovation category of the 2013 NZI National Sustainable Business Network Awards.