Pricing the Priceless: The business case for action on biodiversity

The UK Government’s Natural Environment White Paper brings forward current ideas on the value of environment into policy making.

The global importance of understanding, measuring and capturing the value of nature is shown by the United Nations through TEEB[1] which helped to identify the economic value of nature. In particular, it focuses on how nature’s functions serve people and affect their welfare. This doesn’t automatically solve problems, but can help put information about impacts on biodiversity and ecosystems in front of decision makers. That information can be applied by communities, governments and private business, for whom biodiversity risks are a horizon issue with the potential severity, but far greater complexity, than those posed by climate change. It is illogical to think of climate change policy as separate from ecosystems and biodiversity.

[1] The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) study is a major international initiative to draw attention to the global economic benefits of biodiversity, to highlight the growing costs of biodiversity loss and ecosystem degradation and to draw together expertise from the fields of science, economics and policy to enable practical actions moving forward.