Taking nature into account can accelerate global Sustainable Development Goals, says IUCN

As leaders from business, government and the conservation community prepare to demonstrate the latest advances to value and measure natural capital in their supply chains and national policies, greater action is needed to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, says IUCN.

NatCap17 Photo: World Forum on Natural Capital

IUCN Director General Inger Andersen will outline the action required in her keynote speech at the World Forum on Natural Capital, being held for the third time in Edinburgh, UK, on 27-28 November.

“The world desperately needs a new economic system, one that incorporates the full cost of generating wealth and recognizes nature’s enormous contribution to global growth,” says IUCN Director General Inger Andersen. “The World Forum is an important opportunity for some of the world’s most forward-thinking economists, policy-makers and business leaders to share and explore how we can urgently build a robust, sustainable global economy that values nature and works for all.”

Under the theme, “Better Decisions for a Better World,” the two-day programme will focus on natural capital strategies, tools and case studies in four key streams:  Taking Nature into Account, Impact through Innovation, Cities of Tomorrow and Prosperous and Resilient Economies. 

Ms Andersen will chair a session, Deadline 2030, where high-level representatives from different parts of society will share their vision for taking nature into account.  The Hon. Dr Mary Kitutu, Minister of the State of the Environment in Uganda will participate, along with Katherine Garrett-Cox, CEO of Gulf International Bank, Michael Beuter, Director of Sustainability Operation for Kering and Peter White, Vice President and COO of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

Following a resolution passed by IUCN Members last year, IUCN will also kick-off a consultation to develop global natural capital policy.  This session, What natural capital policy do YOU want?, will hear how some countries, at a policy level, are already moving forward, as well as welcome input and advice from other participants.

To set the scene for the IUCN consultation, representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture and Nature in the Netherlands; the EU Business and Biodiversity Platform; the Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa and FIBS, Finland’s leading corporate responsibility network,  will provide examples of how business and governments are working together to scale up these efforts.

In addition, IUCN will lead two sessions under the Prosperous and Resilient Economies stream.  One, Financing Development, chaired by Ece Ozdemiroglu, the founding director of eftec, will explore the latest developments in conservation finance with examples and case studies from Federacion Amazonas Sustainabilidad, the Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa and UNDP’s Biodiversity Finance Initiative. Here, IUCN will also present the Restoration Opportunities Optimization Tool (ROOT), which was co-developed by IUCN and the Natural Capital Project as a decision-support tool for calculating trade-offs in land use decisions for multiple ecosystem services, opportunity costs and beneficiaries.

Another session on Innovative Ways of Securing Finance will address the current conservation funding gap – estimated to be US $300-400 billion.  Chaired by Jennifer Morris of Conservation International, this session will look at blended finance options to support private investment in natural capital. Participants will hear updates on the European Natural Capital Financing Facility and the Blue Natural Capital Financing Facility, Land Degradation Neutrality Fund and the Coalition for Private Investment in Conservation with speakers from the London School of Economics Institute of Global Affairs, European Investment Bank, Althelia Ecosphere and IUCN.

For more information, visit the Forum webpage here.

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