Mission Économie de la Biodiversité (MEB) is an initiative of Caisse des Dépôts – France’s leading long-term investor serving local and regional economic development –, spearheaded and run by CDC Biodiversité. It is tasked with researching and devising innovative solutions that strike a balance between economic development and the preservation of biodiversity. MEB has a world class Scientific Committee and its research focuses on areas such as urban biodiversity, financing solutions for green and blue corridors, the scientific principles involved in setting up offsetting arrangements, or innovative mechanisms for funding biodiversity preservation. Its goal is to develop solutions for the future, rooted in a long-term, sustainable development perspective that takes account of the limits on natural resources. All of this research is carried out in the service of the public interest and MEB seeks to share and circulate its findings through its various publications.
Connecting Finance and Natural Capital: the Global Biodiversity Score and the Natural Capital Coalition:
As part of the launch of the supplement « Connecting Finance and Natural Capital » to the Natural Capital Protocol on April 23, 2018 in Hong Kong, several major financial players including CDC Biodiversity shared case studies on their contribution to the integration of a natural capital approach in the financing of economic activities. CDC Biodiversité explained how the biodiversity footprint indicator, developed by its research teams from the Biodiversity Economics Mission (MEB), contributes to assessing the impact of businesses and financial institutions on one of the components of natural capital , biodiversity. This indicator, the Global Biodiversity Score (GBS), is a management tool for companies to reduce their biodiversity footprint and fills a deficit of measurement indicators at a strategic level.
The Natural Capital Coalition (NCC), which is a continuation of The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) for Business and Enterprise, was launched in December 2012. It is a reference initiative with approximately 250 signatory organizations around the world. The NCC takes up TEEB’s pioneering work on the economic valuation of ecosystem services and the monetary analysis of externalities for companies and broadens it by introducing the concept of natural capital which is defined as « the way of designating all benefits we derive from nature. » This concept includes biodiversity and ecosystems, climate, water, mineral and energy resources. In 2015, the NCC launched the Natural Capital Protocol (NCP), which aims to create a standardized methodology with the goal of a better understanding and quantification of the impacts and dependencies of businesses on ecosystems.
CDC Biodiversité is a partner of the NCC and a member of the steering committee of the Natural Capital Financial Alliance (NFCA).
The case study is available on the NCC website.
Unlike climate change mitigation which is gradually mainstreamed into business strategies and activities, biodiversity still struggles to be recognized as a major issue for businesses and financial institutions due to its complexity. Yet relations between business and biodiversity are on the verge of a major paradigm shift. At a time when the private sector must step up and play its full role in helping to achieve the objectives laid down by the international community in terms of stopping biodiversity loss, CDC Biodiversité has come up with an innovative methodology that enables companies from all sectors to quantify their impacts on ecosystems by using a single indicator. This indicator, named the Global Biodiversity Score (GBS), is expressed in surface area of destroyed pristine natural areas. The methodology makes it possible to quantify a business’s biodiversity footprint all the way along the value chain. It has been developed jointly with CDC Biodiversité’s B4B+ Club (club of pro-biodiversity businesses) and seeks to help drive the transformation of interactions between economic stakeholders and the living environment in a world in which integrating natural capital – and biodiversity in particular – into decision-making processes has taken on the utmost urgency.
BIODIV’2050 No.7 – July 2015
Business currently generates 60% of the world’s GDP and accounts for a large part of the pressure being placed on ecosystems. Changes in mutually reinforcing production and consumption patterns are an opportunity to rethink the manner in which private stakeholders can participate in preserving and funding biodiversity by looking out for their own interests and catering to this new social demand. Reversing the depletion of biodiversity currently being observed will need a fresh perspective on the relations of the business world with nature. This will require a sector-by-sector analysis of both the benefits to business of pro-biodiversity initiatives and concrete solutions for action.
BIODIV’2050 No.6 – April 2015 – Special issue
Following the Twelfth World Summit on Biodiversity, or COP12, which was held in Pyeongchang, Republic of Korea, last October, the Mission Economie de la Biodiversité of the Caisse des Dépôts’s groupe prepared a special issue of BIODIV’2050. The focus is on the stakes, challenges, terms and conditions of private sector contributions to resource mobilization for biodiversity conservation within the framework of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.
BIODIV’2050 No.5 – December 2014
Edition No. 5 addresses the issue of biodiversity and the urban economy by presenting experiments, studies and projects undertaken throughout the world. It highlights a general trend that takes on many different forms but tends to invent a new ecosystem, re-natured city or urbanised nature where two-thirds of all humans will reside in the future. However, the process of constructing this ecosystem must also address its contribution to the urban economy and value creation.
Summary of discussions at the PESMIX international workshop
BIODIV’2050 Outlook No.2 – December 2014
Payments for Environmental Services (PES) are increasingly used as incentives for the conservation of natural resources in environmental and development policies. To build up the premises for a multidisciplinary view of PES, an international workshop was organised by Cirad and the Mission Économie de la Biodiversité of the Caisse des dépôts as part of the PESMIX research project on 11, 12 and 13 June 2014 in Montpellier. Over 100 participants (economists, lawyers, ecologists, political scientists, philosophers, policy makers, business companies and NGOs) from both the North and the South attended the workshop where the focus was on the present conceptual thought on PES, feedback on experiences with PES, and prospects for future development. This document is a summary of the information, questions and research issues considered at the meeting.
Edition No. 4 of BIODIV’2050 seeks to present a cross-disciplinary overview of the biodiversity of plants cultivated in France and to put the views of the various different stakeholders into perspective. We met and interviewed a selection of key stakeholders in the sector. Their views are presented in a series of inserts throughout this edition which continues to espouse Mission Economie de la Biodiversité’s credo of researching and testing innovative solutions that strike a balance between economic development and the preservation of biodiversity – this time in the agricultural production arena.
Both the international community and the European Union have committed to slowing down biodiversity erosion by 2020 via the Aichi Targets and European Union strategy, respectively. Biodiversity offsets have been identified as one means of reducing biodiversity loss. We felt that it was high time to examine the current issues relating to biodiversity offsetting and its deployment.
Biodiversity is at the root of all economic activity and factoring it into the calculation of national wealth gives a more accurate measurement of the benefits derived from its conservation, particularly for businesses and a number of key economic players. How to encourage businesses to commit to preserving biodiversity? This key issue is at the heart of this BIODIV’2050:
Interviews: Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and Gerard Bos head of the IUCN’s Global Business and Biodiversity Programme.
This first BIODIV’2050 deals with Innovative Financial Mechanisms such as Payment for Ecosystem Services, Inventing new financing solutions for re-establishing ecological networks or environmental accounting.