Climate change is affecting some of the most fragile and essential ecosystems of the planet. Glacier retreat in the mountains is changing water availability for everyone downstream, while islands are sinking due to sea level rise. Mountains and islands are home to 1.3 billion people and they appear like paradises – yet, their inhabitants are among the worst hit, suffering from high rates of poverty and hunger and struggling to cope with climate-change-induced disasters. As the world engages in climate action, we see the need to collaborate on measurable and action-oriented solutions for islands and mountains.
The Coalition for Fragile Ecosystems (COFE) is a global alliance of vulnerable communities living in fragile ecosystems that advocates globally for the protection of mountain and island ecosystems and the resilience of their populations.
Founded in 2017 by the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA) and the Mountain Partnership (MP) during the fifth MP Global Meeting in Rome, and the financial support of the Italian Development Cooperation, COFE is a mechanism intended to speed up progress on the achievement of the 2030 Agenda in fragile ecosystems by raising global attention and prompting tangible commitments and activities.
This alliance builds up on the strong network of the MP and GLISPA, which is represented in over 100 countries and includes more than 60 governments and 400 major groups as partners.
COFE welcomes committed partners and sponsors who support the fragile ecosystems of the world and their sustainable development.
What We Do
Sustainable food and tourism as a pathway for the conservation and use of fragile ecosystems: By 2030, COFE aims to create an international network of fragile ecosystems’ sustainable tourism destinations with sustainable food systems at its heart. The goal is to contribute to improving the livelihoods of the local communities through:
- job creation
- inclusive social integration
- protection of natural and cultural heritage
- biodiversity conservation
The COFE works with small-holder farmers, cooperatives, businesses, tour operators and institutions promoting sustainable tourism – focusing on preserving biodiversity, agrobiodiversity, cultural heritage and local gastronomy.
COFE has planned and implemented a series of demonstration projects aiming to:
- Strengthen traditional food systems, with women and youth as agents of change
- Promote high-quality local products
- Connect producers with tourism service providers, chefs and restaurants
- Raise awareness among visitors on how to support local biodiversity and local economy
1. Palau Sustainable Tourism Value Chain Programme
Mountains and islands share common features that make them valuable to the global community:
- high rates of biodiversity
- important tourism destinations
- high quality traditional products, from food to textiles
- diverse cultural values
Combined, these fragile ecosystems make up 30 percent of earth's surface area, and are home to 23 percent of the world’s population.
If you are interested in becoming a partner of COFE, please email Kate Brown, GLISPA and Giorgio Grussu, MP