A strong network of private and state protected areas has proved to be an important mechanism to conserve biodiversity and improve land management. The Western Cape Protected Area Expansion Strategy for 2021 to 2025 is aligned to the South African National Protected Area Expansion Strategy, the National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act and the CapeNature Strategic Plan 2021-2025. The identification of priority areas for the protection of biodiversity is informed by the Western Cape Biodiversity Spatial Plan (WCBSP) of 2017. Habitat loss, climate change and degradation are among the most pressing threats to biodiversity globally and this is equally true for the Greater Cape Floristic Region, the world’s smallest floristic region and a global biodiversity hotspot.
To support functional ecological processes and climate change adaptation, CapeNature implements a landscape-scale conservation approach. The emphasis is moving from protected area-centric conservation to bridging divisions between geographies, jurisdictions, sectors, and cultures to safeguard ecological, cultural, and economic benefits for all. This approach enables a stronger focus on strategic partnerships with key stakeholders such as local municipalities, provincial and national departments, NGOs, other conservation agencies, landowners, and communities.