“Philanthropy is a way to distribute profit. Investing is a way to create profit”
COP 15 ends with a remarkable agreement for the protection of nature. In particular, it consists of setting limits to the expansion of human activities through global quantitative targets for reducing the impact of our activities on nature, such as having protected 30% of the land and marine area by 2030 or restored 30% of degraded areas by 2030.
The Financing Nature report, prepared by the Paulson Institute, The Nature Conservancy and the Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability, probably played a role in the Kunming-Montreal agreement.
The report, endorsed by former finance leaders (Michael Bloomberg, Mark Carney, Mario Draghi), is addressed to public and private policymakers and the financial sector and is intended to inform the negotiations of the Post-2020 Biodiversity Framework.
It builds the economic scenarios needed to make biodiversity “bankable” and to lead these actors to develop new public policies and new financial services aimed at slowing and halting biodiversity loss on a global scale.
The funding gap is estimated at between US$ 598 Bn and US$ 824 Bn per year according to the report. US$ 700 Bn is the value retained by COP 15 (GOAL D).
The report suggests that this funding gap can be mobilised by placing the value of natural capital at the heart of economic models and financial markets. Among the solutions identified by the UNDP (UNDP BIOFIN catalogue of Finance Solutions), the report identifies a set of financial mechanisms and public policies that should be implemented rapidly to achieve this objective, including an end to subsidy policies for the sectors with the most significant impacts.
The Kunming-Montreal Convention refers to this basket of solutions in its objectives, which commit to reducing the most impactful subsidies by US$ 500 Bn per year by 2025 (Target 18) and to mobilising at least US$ 200 Bn per year by 2030 of public and private resources for the implementation of national biodiversity strategies (Target 19), thus filling the financing gap of US$ 700 Bn per year.
The hardest thing now is the massive development of projects that enable finance to deliver on its promises in terms of both volume and quality.