Could putting a value on nature transform U.S. policymaking?

The U.S. federal government is taking its first-ever steps to formally incorporate the value of nature into policymaking.

The White House has announced a series of measures in recent months – and at the ongoing UN COP15 nature summit in Montreal, the United States and Australia agreed to cooperate on the issue and encourage other countries to follow suit.

The actions seek to “put nature on the nation’s balance sheet, and give Americans a full view of how gains or losses in nature affect us today and might affect our future,” a White House official said by email on condition of anonymity.

Many multinational companies have also started assessing their impact and dependency on nature in recent years, but most are doing so in limited ways, said Jane Ingram, executive director of Pollination, an investment and advisory firm.

For instance, a timber company may be tracking forest health “but not changes in water quality or biodiversity,” Ingram said.

Now, she said, national-level data could help fill the gaps.

“We will increasingly see the value of nature streamlined into business products, insurance products, loans and federal policies,” she said.

Read the full CTV article here.


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