Leveraging Markets for Conservation: Removing the Roadblocks to Scaling up.

Private sector has long been blamed as the foe of conservation, and not without reasons. The unprecedented occurrence of floods, drought, poverty and conflicts are the outcomes of our collective neglect of nature. Businesses have increasingly sought green credentials, some as public relations and others for legitimate concerns as to the sustainability of the landscape and communities they so heavily depend on for their supplies. In the process some outstanding examples of business leadership in sustainability have emerged across the different sectors of economy changing landscapes and ecosystems, restoring their resilience and enhancing their productive potential premised on sustainable use and maintaining essential ecosystem services.
Vital to an effective businessĀ“s participation in the conservation movement has been the certification movement. FSC, SAN, RSPO and other certification systems are enabling the otherwise elusive notion of sustainability to be practically implemented and measured. The related assurance mechanisms of audits and verifications assure the economic participants, independently and credibly, that their contributions are worth making.

Yet biodiversity loss remains alarming. Poverty is pervasive. Less than 10 %of the world forests and coffee estates are certified to be managed sustainably. And, the threat of loss of tropical forests to bio-fuels looms large.
What then prevents to scale up mainstreaming sustainability in business exemplified by so many initiatives? Do we as a society lack a compelling vision? Is it a blurred vision put through a twisted tunnel that obscures foresight? Is action suffering from paralyses through analysis: too much talk and too less action. Or, is the lack of an enabling policy impeding progress. What other factors are in play?

This workshop will address these and other key questions, by practical worldwide examples, with a focus on framing recommendations to leverage business participation in conserving the world biodiversity at a meaningful scale.

Presentations and discussions will be lead by representatives from Fauna & Flora International, Rainforest Alliance, Nespresso, EarthWatch Institute, Forest Stewardship Council, IUCN's Business and Biodiversity Programme, and IUCN's Commission on Environmental, Economic and Social Policy (CEESP).

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