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In this issue

·         Ongoing highlights from the 2015 National Biodiversity and Business Indaba

·         NBBN events

·         National events

·         International events, publications and news

 

 

Other News

The DEA-NBBN publication entitled “Overview of current approaches and practices of South African businesses to the mainstreaming of biodiversity: a preliminary baseline assessment” can be downloaded by clicking here.

Detailed proceedings of the 2015 National Biodiversity and Business Indaba are available for download click here.

 

Contact us

For further information on the NBBN or related activities please contact:

Michael Adams
Acting Manager: National Biodiversity and Business Network
Endangered Wildlife Trust
W + 27 11 372 3600 | Ext 64 | F + 27 11 608 4682 | C + 2783 680 7619
Email
: michaela@ewt.org.za | Web: www.ewt.org.za

 

Welcome to the January 2016 issue of the National Biodiversity and Business Network (NBBN) newsletter

The NBBN would like to wish all its readers a prosperous and successful 2016. To distribute any biodiversity and business relevant information to the network in the next newsletter, please forward the information to Michael (michaela@ewt.org.za) by the 25th February 2016.

 

Ongoing Highlights from the 2015 National Biodiversity and Business Indaba

 

DAY 2: How has biodiversity mainstreaming progressed in the finance sector and what are the challenges?

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Attendees during a panel discussion at the National Biodiversity and Business Network Indaba, 2015

 

1.       There is a general perception of a low level of maturity in terms of the mainstreaming of biodiversity into the financial sector. A medium level of mainstreaming has taken place in investment banking due to the effects of the Equator Principles but very little mainstreaming has taken place in retail banking.

 

2.       The financial sector is an indirect sector and as such, insurance companies, for example, are not the owners of the assets but are undertaking services on behalf of other people. Thus it can be difficult to accurately map the supply chain and its impacts.

 

3.       The language used when talking about biodiversity can problematic when discussing the topic with financial institutions. It needs to be focussed and context specific.

 

4.       Leading financial services organisations and the NGO sector should advocate levelling the playing field by setting minimum standards for all whilst recognising that there are capacity constraints, especially for small businesses.

 

5.       There is a need to lobby for enterprise development levies and green funds to be used to build ecological infrastructure and create jobs.

 

6.       Leading financial services organisations and the NGO sector should advocate levelling the playing field by setting minimum standards for all, whilst recognising that there are capacity constraints, especially for small businesses.

 

NBBN past events

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9 – 13 November 2015, 8TH WORLD ESP CONFERENCE, Spier Wine farm, Stellenbosch, Western Cape, South Africa. The central theme was ‘Ecosystem Services for Nature, People and Prosperity’. The African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS), the South African Department of Environmental Affairs, the Natural Capital Coalition, the WBCSD, Conservation International, Hemporium, and the NBBN co-hosted the special session: “S5 - Ecosystem services in business” at the conference. For more information click here. 

 

The NBBN also recently partnered with a number of other organisations to present a pre-conference workshop on 8 November on the draft Natural Capital Protocol and sector guides, before they were released for consultation. For more information on the workshop click here

 

 

National events

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Internationally certified GRI sustainability reporting course, 23 to 25 February 2016 in Johannesburg.

This course combines the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) certified course on sustainability reporting with the GRI Performance Indicator Workshop. The course also addresses the link between sustainability and integrated reporting. Based on the G4 guidelines. Participants receive a GRI certificate. For more information visit www.ess-sustainability.co.za, e-mail seakle@ess-sustainability.co.za or phone 082 395 7582.

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Cambridge Sustainability Practitioner Programme. 28 February - 2 March 2016, Diemersfontein, Wellington, South Africa. This seminar is designed for managers in organisations from the private or public sector to equip them with a high-level understanding of sustainability. For more information click here, or contact Magda on magda.dekok@cisl.cam.ac.uk.

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Earth Expo 2016 Montecasino, Fourways, August 11-14. The Earth Expo aims to educate and inspire sustainable living. The exhibition will showcase a diverse range of products and services to encourage visitors to make more sustainable choices in their daily life. There will also be a number of informative workshops hosted by experts, which will cover a broad range of topics from permaculture, aquaponics, and gardening to health, nutrition, and building technologies. Visit the website here for more details.

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Africa Energy Indaba 2016, Sandton Convention Centre, 16 to 17 February 2016.

This Indaba brings together international and continental experts to share their insights and solutions to Africa's energy crisis, while exploring the vast energy development opportunities on offer in Africa. Click here for further details or email info@energyindaba.co.za.

 

International events, publications and news

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Outcomes of the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Paris, December 2015.

Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) reached a landmark agreement on December 12 in Paris, charting a fundamentally new course in the two-decade-old global climate effort. To read the article click here or to view a PDF of the summary document please click here.

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Are corporates coming on board to tackle climate change? January, 2016.  The head of an NGO working with corporates thinks so, and so does a big retail chain. The 2015 climate summit in Paris was considered a qualified success by many. Even then, it was essentially an agreement between governments. To make real change will mean a change of lifestyle, and that will require massive changes in the way we consume. Read the full article here.

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The World Conservation Congress 2016, September 2016.

Every four years, the IUCN World Conservation Congress brings together thousands of decision-makers from government, civil society, business and academia.  "Planet at the crossroads" is the theme of the next Congress, which will be held in Hawai'i, and a public Forum will take place from 2-5 September. For more information click here.

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EU Environment Council adopted conclusions on the mid-term review of the EU Biodiversity Strategy, December 2015. On 16 Dec 2015, the EU Environment Council adopted conclusions on the mid-term review of the EU Biodiversity Strategy. Ministers pointed out the areas where further work is needed in order to reach the targets. The goal for 2020 is to halt the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services and to restore them as far as this is feasible. Read the article summary here.

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Sustainable Landscapes for People, Business and Biodiversity, 29 June - 2 July 2016. The Society for Conservation Biology (SCB) Asia section and the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ATBC) Asia-Pacific chapter invite you to join them at the National University of Singapore for the Asia Chapter Meeting, “Sustainable Landscapes for People, Business and Biodiversity”. For details and registration click here.

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UN Secretary-General Urges Business Everywhere to Advance New Sustainable Development and Climate Agendas, January 2016. On the 14th January 2016 the UN Global Compact Board joined Ambassadors and senior UN officials to emphasize the role of the private sector and partnerships in advancing global challenges. The meeting takes place on the heels of historic global agreements reached by world leaders on sustainable development and climate in late 2015. Full article here.

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If it pays, will it stay?

Regional biodiversity is back in financial focus with a draft 14-year Strategy published for the Biodiversity Economy of South Africa. This economy is seen as encompassing the businesses and economic activities that either directly depends on biodiversity for their core business or that contribute to conservation of biodiversity through their activities. Read more here.

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Nagoya Protocol expected to reach milestone 100 ratifications in 2016, January 2016. Following accession by Slovakia on 29 December 2015, the total number of ratifications to the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization now stands at 70. Download the PDF here.

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Climate smart agriculture remains key to Africa’s Development, December 2016. Collaboration by various stakeholders including governments, NGOs and research bodies is needed now to rapidly scale-up the African agricultural sector to improve food security and resilience to climate change,” says Estherine Fotabong, NEPAD Programmes Director. Read article here.

2015 scorched climate records, was hottest year 'by far', January 2016. 2015 was the warmest year since modern record-keeping began in 1880, according to a new analysis by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies. The record-breaking year continues a long-term warming trend — 15 of the 16 warmest years on record have now occurred since 2001. See full article here.

 

 

 

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