A revolution is taking place in how businesses and governments account for natural capital.
The inaugural World Forum on Natural Capital will be the first major global conference devoted exclusively to turning the debate on natural capital accounting into action. It will build on the enormous private sector interest shown at the United Nations Earth Summit in Rio in June 2012 and the many developments that have taken place since.
Against a backdrop of growing global awareness that our ecosystems and biodiversity underpin both wealth creation and human security, the Rio Earth Summit saw the launch of the Natural Capital Declaration, a global finance-led initiative convened by the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative and the Global Canopy Programme.
By signing the Declaration, CEOs at the helm of 39 banks, investment funds and insurance companies announced their commitment to understanding their impacts and dependencies on natural capital, and to incorporating natural capital considerations into their products and accounting. The United Nations Environment Programme is one of the key partners in the World Forum on Natural Capital, which will mark an important step in moving the debate further towards action.
There are many reasons to be in Edinburgh this November:
- Understand the implications of the fast evolving debate about natural capital and how the opportunities and risks could affect your bottom line
- Network with senior decision makers and sustainability leaders from around the world
- Gain access to the latest developments and practical tools
- See how natural capital relates to current developments in Integrated Reporting and new approaches to Corporate Social Responsibility
- Help shape the debate for the benefit of business and the planet
WHAT IS NATURAL CAPITAL ACCOUNTING?
Fresh water, clean air, fertile soil, fish stocks and forests are all examples of the natural capital on which human wellbeing and economic prosperity depend. Yet these natural assets do not appear on traditional balance sheets and can therefore be invisible in decision-making. As a result, we are losing natural capital faster than ever before. A recent report by the TEEB for Business Coalition estimates the cost of environmental externalities at a staggering US$7.3 trillion annually. But we can’t manage what we don’t measure.
Natural capital accounting is a rapidly evolving new way of thinking about how we value the economic benefits we derive from our natural environment. (For an explanation of natural capital and ecosystem services click here.)
The World Forum on Natural Capital will bring together world-class speakers, cutting edge case studies and senior decision makers from different sectors, in order to turn the debate into practical action.
Lively plenaries and interactive breakout sessions in four conference streams will explore the risks and opportunities for business, allow access to the very latest developments and provide an opportunity to help shape the debate through dialogue between policymakers, business leaders and prominent experts in the field.
The World Forum on Natural Capital is organised by the Scottish Wildlife Trust in association with the United Nations Environment Programme; International Union for Conservation of Nature; World Business Council for Sustainable Development; TEEB for Business Coalition and The Wildlife Trusts.