The most fundamental building block of nature is ‘biodiversity’ – the variability and abundance of living organisms and their habitats. It is under serious threat. One in five species on Earth now faces extinction and scientists estimate that this incidence will rise to 50% by the end of the century unless urgent action is taken.
Nature and natural ecosystems provide a non-negotiable foundation for economic growth, human health and prosperity. It also has a major influence on the health, happiness, and ability of employees and citizens. According to one estimate, humans derive approximately $125 trillion of value from these ecosystems each year.
The Nature Action Agenda is a platform for public-private cooperation that aims to catalyse a movement of businesses, governments, civil society, academics, innovators, and youth to disrupt business-as-usual approaches and halt biodiversity loss by 2030. The NAA sees the UN Convention on Biological Diversity to be hosted by China in Kunming in October 2020 as a key milestone to drive action in a time-to-goal fashion.
The Nature Action Agenda is organised around several action tracks.
1. Champions for Nature. A high-level principals-only public-private group of leaders raising the profile of the issue and broadening the narrative to reflect nature’s critical role as the infrastructure that underpins humanity’s prosperity and existence.
2. New Nature Economy Report: Nature of Risks and Opportunities. The report is set up in three sections i.e. Risks, Opportunities and Financing and aimed to release by June 2020 with discussion papers to be released along the way. Targeted at economic actors, this report will make the case for biodiversity and nature as a critical component for growth and development.
3. Communications for Nature. Communication and mobilization activities that draw on the strength of the network to create broad-scale awareness for the Nature Action Agenda and which also signal to key decision-makers that the behaviours and priorities of citizens, employees, and consumers are shifting and that they support action. A key example in the past year of this work has been Voicefortheplanet.org which has garnered over 200,000 individual signatures to demand a more ambitious agenda for nature.
4. Engagement with China. This workstream recognises China’s central role as host of the UN Biodiversity Conference in October 2020 (CBD COP15), its philosophy of ‘ecological civilization’, and the potential of the world’s second-largest economy to decarbonize infrastructure and investment.
5. Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) for Nature. Testing and piloting a series of potential ‘moon-shot’ innovations with a view to announcing the most promising ones at COP15 and then scaling them from 2020 to 2030.