France: New study focuses on upscaling corporate solutions for biodiversity

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08 March, 2021




Paris, 8 March 2021: Strong societal expectations about nature conservation, international events for raising awareness among leaders in 2020-2021, animal-based epidemics linked to growing human pressure on natural ecosystems, and indisputable scientific findings on the collapse of biodiversity have led businesses over the last few years to include nature more decisively in their corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies. Corporates have also become aware of the consequences and risks to them of potentially serious or systemic biodiversity erosion.

A new report by Entreprises pour l’Environnement (EpE) titled Upscaling corporate solutions for biodiversity seeks to describe the actual levers and modes of action that are successfully being used by business, and also to identify the conditions for their scale-up: the point is how to take or pursue actions of a similar nature at different plants and sites, or in other sectors and businesses, without switching pressure from one environment or issue to another?

The publication is divided into three chapters:

  • Chapter 1 describes the mechanisms to avoid or reduce the pressures on biodiversity exerted by business, as listed in the IPBES summary report. These pressures are well known and measurable, even though their impacts vary depending on the sensitivity of the environments in which they occur. Stopping biodiversity erosion starts with reducing all such pressures. This is the first step of effective corporate action.
  • Chapter 2 presents solutions for recreating biodiversity-friendly spaces and conditions. This involves safeguarding areas where nature can spontaneously thrive, and from time to time stimulating or stepping up such action. The solutions are profoundly different according to the environments in which they are implemented. IUCN recommendations list three area categories for action: wilderness areas to be protected, productive areas to be exploited in a more biodiversity-friendly manner, and built-up areas where nature is to be reintroduced.
  • The third and last chapter deals with management methods and tools to promote the factoring of nature into economic decision-making. It draws in particular on the biodiversity management analysis performed by businesses supporting the act4nature cross-cutting commitments and Business for Nature coalition.

 It provides examples that illustrate how businesses from all sectors are taking action and implementing solutions that protect and restore nature. Importantly, it also outlines solutions that while not widespread, could be scaled up and mainstreamed and by doing so, deliver significant benefits for ecosystems and business. This original publication, rich in examples, responds to it through 60 sharing of best practices.

This output is the product of presentations and debates carried out by EpE’s Biodiversity Commission which met between 2017 and 2020, under the chairmanship of Nathalie Devulder, Director of Sustainable Development at RTE. Written by EpE, it collects the experiences and best practices of EpE members, along with the insights of many biodiversity experts.

EpE hopes that these recommendations will help companies achieve the necessary scale-up and foster a broader discussion with other stakeholders on the practices we must develop together for ecosystems and business.

EpE is a partner of WBCSD’s Global Network, an alliance of more than 60 CEO-led business organizations worldwide. The Network, encompassing some 5,000 companies, is united by a shared commitment to provide business leadership for sustainable development in their respective countries and regions.

More information
Sylvie Gillet
Head of Biodiversity
Entreprises pour l’Environnement