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PRESS RELEASE: Hear nature’s cry - and change our economies

By Oliver Greenfield GEC · 26th March, 2018
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Photo by Dikaseva on Unsplash

Responding to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) reports on the state of biodiversityOliver Greenfield, Convenor of the Green Economy Coalition, said:

“The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’ (IPBES) report captures nature’s collective cry for help. Nature is not just suffering, it is dying.

The report is powerful and compelling. But it does not go far enough into the cause of nature’s decline, which is that our current ‘brown’ economic system is geared towards rapacious expansion and is blind to its dependence on nature.

Whilst the Green Economy Coalition believes that there is no single solution, we know that the rules and structures of the brown economy need to change if nature is going to be protected at scale. 

Everyone, from global organisations to governments, from businesses to households, must understand that our economies and our livelihoods are dependent on nature. This dependency must be hard-wired into economic models, performance indicators, and theories, so that prices and values can drive a transformation from brown to green.

Science is increasingly aware of nature’s critical thresholds that mustn’t be crossed, but we still don’t fully appreciate the scale of risk facing our economies. Governments must recognise that each nation has a balance sheet of assets (including its natural capital) to safeguard and improve, and that investing in this capital will ward off risk and help our economies and societies to thrive. We see this policy leadership driving new sectoral innovations in lending, land use, energy, food, green infrastructure and cities.  

We know that mainstream economics does not yet recognise its dependency on nature. But we believe that until doing the wrong thing costs more than doing the right thing, our economies will continue to eat away at life itself.”

Oliver Greenfield

Photo by Cristian Grecu on Unsplash

Notes to editors

The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) regional assessment reports were released Monday March 26th.

The Green Economy Coalition (GEC) is a global alliance committed to accelerating the transition towards fair and green economies. Bringing together NGOs, trade unions, businesses, researchers and international organisations, the GEC supports multi-stakeholder dialogues and knowledge sharing of how economic transitions can take hold at speed and scale.

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