Environmental Incentives (EI) has published a Pay for Performance Guide for California Agencies to encourage the adoption of outcome-based contracting and increase conservation across the state. The Guide discusses how pay for performance approaches could improve the scale and effectiveness of conservation projects and outlines the path for agencies to create performance-based programs.
California is poised to spend billions of dollars towards conservation projects in order to accomplish the State’s ambitious environmental goals, such as Governor Newsom’s California Water Resilience Portfolio. These environmental projects will encompass hundreds of thousands of habitat acres and involve numerous agencies and stakeholders. Using pay for performance contracting mechanisms will help state agencies ensure this funding is used efficiently to create the intended environmental benefits, while also overcoming project barriers like land acquisition, extensive timelines, and limited agency capacity.
In order to write this Guide, EI leveraged our experience designing pay for performance programs, and worked closely with conservation NGOs, including Environmental Defense Fund and American Rivers, to understand the needs of project implementers. We also engaged several local and state agencies, who create and fund projects that support communities and the environment, to understand their needs and barriers. We hosted a Conservation Finance in California workshop to bring together these entities and discuss pay for performance opportunities and constraints. Many of the discussions and outcomes of this workshop are captured in the Guide.
Throughout the state and beyond, there is growing momentum around pay for performance programs and the outcomes they create. If you are curious to see how this model can work within your agency please explore our Pay for Performance Guide for California Agencies, Performance Toolkit or contact our experts with any questions.