Coastal Watershed Conservation in the Context of Climate Change (C6)

Promoting integrated management in coastal watersheds

The project

The Coastal Watershed Conservation in the Context of Climate Change (C6) project aims to promote integrated management in coastal watersheds to conserve their biodiversity, contribute to climate change mitigation and strengthen the sustainable use of their natural resources. This is for the recovery of watershed functionality and the provision of its ecosystem services.


A coastal watershed is a territory delimited by a drainage basin, where a system of rivers converges and flows into the sea. Climate change scenarios in Mexico indicate that the coastal watersheds of the Gulf of Mexico and the continental part of the Gulf of California will be severely affected by increased droughts, hurricanes, and floods.

The C6 project had a successful operation between 2013 and 2018. It strengthened the management of ten protected areas (PAs) with returns from heritage resources and promoted community participation, efforts based on collaboration with the Gulf of Mexico Fund (FGM) and FONNOR (Northwestern and Western Fund).

The lines of work that guide the actions of C6 are:

  1. Creation and consolidation of protected areas (PAs).
  2. Promotion of watersheds sustainability.
  3. Enabling adaptive management by strengthening monitoring capacities.

Coastal watersheds are an essential element for preserving biodiversity and reducing vulnerability to climate change.


From March to May 2019, a team of international consultants evaluated the impact and effectiveness of the C6 project in the field, considering environmental, financial, and social aspects. The results are as follows: the C6 project involved collaboration with 30 civil society organizations, two regional funds, state and municipal authorities, and academic institutions to contribute to the integrated management of 16 coastal watersheds, an essential element for preserving biodiversity and reducing vulnerability to climate change. The project exceeded its goals due to the cooperation of all sectors and was highlighted as a milestone of excellence by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the World Bank.

In the second half of 2023, the achievements in the supported PAs stood out, especially in the Sierra de Vallejo Río Ameca, whose strategic planning contributed to its declaration as a Biosphere Reserve. The C6 project has promoted the CONECTA and RÍOS projects, which achieved their objectives under the coordination of FGM and FONNOR, reinforcing the commitment to landscape conservation and fostering new alliances for environmental protection in Mexico.

The final evaluation of C6 is available to read here.

Learn more about the project:



  • Global Environment Facility
  • World Bank


  • Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales 
  • Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas 
  • Comisión Nacional Forestal 
  • Instituto Nacional de Ecología y Cambio Climático

The collaboration between three public institutions (CONANP, CONAFOR, and INECC) and one private institution (FMCN) is an innovative component that sought to trigger collaboration and coordination processes. In managing the project, FMCN, FONNOR, and Fondo Golfo de México supported those responsible for the subprojects and protected areas to achieve efficient and transparent use of project resources.