Solving climate change with nature
The novel coronavirus, COVID-19, has posed significant challenges to communities around the world. We have experienced the loss of millions of lives due to a global pandemic, disruption to key parts of our social fabric, and record losses of jobs and economic activity. There is uncertainty ahead. Addressing the epidemic remains the number one priority.
Nature is one of our greatest allies in this. The Nature Conservancy believes that deep investment in natural systems can help create significant jobs and innovation while tackling another pressing global threat: climate change. Harnessing the power of nature for better reconstruction. Despite overwhelming evidence and consensus that climate breakdown is already in progress, action by governments and companies still needs to be done to achieve the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement and much effort to keep the planet below 1.5. Behind it, which is what many believe and there is a need.
Europe was one of the first major economies to put nature at the center of its recovery, with plans to recover from a detailed epidemic announced in May. And it does so through the Green Deal - a comprehensive plan to put Europe on track to a zero-greenhouse gas-emissions economy by 2050, which includes restoring the health of its natural environment, while also restoring the region's wildlife. Including protection.
The EU's new Forest Strategy is one of several sets of actions planned under the New Green Agreement that dramatically raise the protection and restoration of Europe's forests as an important way to absorb more greenhouse gas emissions. The Forest Strategy also recognizes that the EU can have a positive impact on forests beyond its borders by promoting imported products and value chains that do not involve deforestation and forest degradation. We cannot build back better - or effectively fight climate change - without deepening our investments in nature.
A Green Deal cannot be achieved by policy makers and institutions alone; This requires strong cooperation between government, industry and business representatives. CEOs from many of Europe's leading companies, including Deutsche Bank, AXA, Sanam and Royal DSM, are part of the European Green Deal CEO Working Group, which aims to mobilize business to contribute to the effort. In addition, many of the major international energy companies located in the region are among the European companies taking steps to align with a net green deal target by 2050.
Big European oil companies have increased their ambitions to tackle climate change over the past six months, with Total, Shell, BP, Repsol and Eni all pledging to reduce the carbon intensity of the energy they provide. Natural climate solutions can play an important role in meeting these new commitments, especially in the short term. It should be an addition, not at the expense of rapidly removing carbon from the corporate core business. In other words, nature presents an opportunity for them to act quickly on climate change & working with Shell on natural climate solutions.
The Nature Conservancy has been working with Shell on natural climate solutions since 2016, and in 2019 Shell announced plans to invest $300 million in natural climate solutions around the world. They have since committed to becoming a net zero-emissions energy company by 2050. Working with industry leaders is important, but we also need strong and clear rules for investing in such companies. The Nature Conservancy is working with the World Business Council for Development, the World Economic Forum and other institutions to develop.
A nature-based solution for clean water. Resilient European cities: nature-based solutions for clean water. New report shows where and how nature-based solutions can be deployed to protect European water resources. What are the best nature-based solutions to tackle pollution from agriculture! To achieve their full potential, the right types of nature-based systems must be deployed in the right places and at the right size. The report examines the potential of four common solutions to reduce the spread of pollution challenges and bring benefits to people and nature: cover crops, river barriers, forest protection, and afforestation (see chart below). Table detailing four nature-based solutions, cover crops, riverine reserves, forest protection and reforestation To help prioritize and mobilize innovative investments in Europe, the report outlines the impact of nutrient and sediment pollution in 109 European cities that are highly dependent on surface water sources for their drinking water supplies, and in particular are vulnerable to pollution due to dramatically changing landscapes. . 78.5 million people live in these cities - equivalent to 15 per cent of the total population of the European Union and the United Kingdom. Of the four national census strategies reviewed, planting cover crops for most selected cities has the greatest potential to reduce sediment and nutrient contamination. Forest conservation can also be an important approach for many specific cities to reduce or avoid soil loss and protect water quality. Although their ability to reduce pollution as individual strategies is limited, riparian barriers and reforestation can play an important role in protecting source watersheds. At least 63 European cities, where 42 million people live, could benefit significantly from large-scale investments in NbS. The cities that benefit most are shown in the maps below. A number of strategic steps must be taken so that non-agricultural solutions have the maximum impact on water security in Europe. First, NBS must be implemented on a large scale - the piecemeal approach is unlikely to have a significant impact. Second, it is important to prioritize areas where nature can provide the greatest impact in order to demonstrate proof-of-concept and fundraising. Third, more local collective action mechanisms must be established to coordinate stakeholders across sectors and accelerate NBS implementation. Existing governance mechanisms, such as river basin regions, exist across the EU, but have not been established to meet specific challenges and implement more locally coordinated actions. Finally, it is important that these efforts operate with clear objectives designed to monitor results - this is critical to adjust strategies, demonstrate effectiveness.