On the same day as the UN General Assembly adopts its 75th declaration that recognizes the urgent need for Member States to act to protect our planet and build back better, more than 560 companies with combined revenue of US$ 4 trillion, including Walmart, Citigroup, Microsoft, JD.com, Hitachi, IKEA, Unilever, Axa, Mahindra Group and H&M urge governments to adopt policies now to reverse nature loss in this decade through the following statement: “Healthy societies, resilient economies and thriving businesses rely on nature. Governments must adopt policies now to reverse nature loss in this decade. Together let’s protect, restore and sustainably use our natural resources.”
Business for Nature’s Call to Action is the first time so many businesses have stepped forward with the ambition of influencing discussions in the run up to delivering a Post 2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. It follows recent and widespread calls from Conservation, Development and Humanitarian Organizations, Faith Groups, Cities, Indigenous Peoples and Youth groups for more ambitious action on nature to protect human and planetary health.
“It is exciting and unprecedented to see so many businesses urging for bold government action to reform nature policies. Many businesses are making commitments and taking action. But for us all to live well within the planet’s finite limits, we need to scale and speed up efforts now, not tomorrow. We need to see positive political ambition to address nature loss, climate change and inequality which will drive more even more action by business.” Eva Zabey, Executive Director of Business4Nature
Importantly, businesses recognize that it is in their best interests. Before COVID-19, the need to create more resilient economies and societies was clear, now it is inescapable. The natural resources and ecosystems that power businesses and underpin economies and communities are under huge strain and the potential for disruption to whole industries is significant. According to the World Economic Forum, industries highly dependent on nature generate 15% of global GDP ($13 trillion), while moderately dependent industries generate 37% ($31 trillion). Natural disasters linked to ecosystem degradation and climate change cost more than $300bn each year – while an estimated 40 to 60 percent of small businesses never reopen after such events.
“We need to make sure that we stop working against nature. This means rethinking the way we live, produce, consume and eat, to build a resilient food model and taking into account our dependence on nature and life. We must bend the curve on climate change and nature loss in the next 10 years and we need collective effort now. Governments must support businesses in making the shift to Nature Based Solutions by making sure there is the appropriate regulatory framework to make these transitions at scale.” Emmanuel Faber, CEO, Danone
Forward-thinking businesses are committing, acting and now advocating to reverse nature loss. But we need to scale and speed up efforts if we are to have any chance of what scientists tell us is necessary to mitigate climate change and to thrive within nature’s limits. The Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework is our opportunity to reset our relationship with nature and create a carbon-neutral, nature-positive and fair world, where we give back to nature and climate more than we are currently talking. This means that by 2030 we have more nature than we have now.
Businesses cannot address this global crisis on their own. To accelerate action, businesses are calling on governments to work together and create a positive policy feedback-loop to spur more business action and ambition.
Read Business call to action here!
Read the full press release here.