The State of Nature’s Fortune
With climate week right around the corner and with more interest from the business community than ever before, people have been asking for my take on efforts to encourage investment in nature.
You may recall that way back in 2013, Jonathan Adams and I co-wrote a book on this very topic: Nature’s Fortune: How Business and Society Thrive by Investing in Nature.
At the time, we saw big opportunities for investments that would both protect nature and also produce valuable co-benefits, including the opportunity to:
- Sequester and remove carbon emissions that cause climate change
- Protect both the quality and quantity of water
- Provide protection from extreme weather and sea level rise
- Improve and enlarge natural habitat areas to bolster biodiversity
- Create successful substitutes for single-use plastic
- Improve health outcomes and reduce extreme heat in urban environments
- Manage excess water challenges in cities
- Substitute plant-based proteins to replace meat
And so much more.
We argued that initiatives like these would increase the number of savvy business people and firms engaged with nature and accelerate both capital formation and innovation.
I was running a big global conservation NGO at the time. It seemed to me that we would be able to protect much more nature if we had more people, more organizations, and more capital on the side of nature. That’s why I wrote the book.