Symposium on Biological Diversity – Biodiversity as Chance: Path to the Future
On Wednesday November 17, 2010 the ‘Biodiversity in Good Company’, funded by the BMU and implemented by the GTZ, together with the Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union (NABU) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), hosted the Symposium on Biological Diversity – Biodiversity as Chance: Path to the Future at the GTZ’ Berlin headquarters.
The symposium revolved around discussing the results from the tenth conference of parties to the Convention on Biodiversity that took place in Japan this October and answering the central question: How politics, businesses and civil society can maintain the natural abundance found in the world’s ecosystems as the foundation of the global economy.
Representatives from business, civil society and politics made contributions at the symposium. More than 100 participants followed the presentations and debates on business and biodiversity. Volker Angres, head anchorman of the ZDF series “Umwelt” (environment) chaired the day’s event.
After an introduction from NABU, the GTZ and PWC highlighting the integral role business plays in maintaining biodiversity and its dependence thereon, the German Federal Minister for the Environment, Dr. Norbert Röttgen, reported on the achievements of the CoP 10.
“Biodiversity protection and preservation is an overarching concern that, together with climate protection, is one of the greatest challenges facing human kind…” with these words the Minister of Environment closed his speech. According to the Minister the ‘Biodiversity in Good Company’ initiative is “worth its weight in gold” and building alliances with the business world indispensable, in order to tackle the current challenges.
After a lunch break, The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) study was presented. It clearly portrays what global economic significance the loss of biological diversity represents for the public and private sectors. To wrap up the symposium, experts from the business sector reported on their experiences with biodiversity management systems and their motives for incorporating this into their business practices.
What is more, the conference hosts presented their role in guiding businesses in the process of biodiversity management. Part of this presentation included the coordinator of the ‘Biodiversity in Good Company’ Initiative, Mr Edgar Endrukaitis, and his introduction of the Corporate Biodiversity Management Handbook as a practical guide for operational practice.
A collective consensus was drawn about the significance of integrating biodiversity into economic terms and informing businesses about the chances and risks presented by biodiversity-relevant issues. During the day, it also became clear that there is still a great need to explain and make available information concerning the importance of biodiversity to businesses and especially to consumers.
Here you can find an overview of the day’s programme and a speaker’s list.
The handbook with supporting information can be found here.