Image: Cala Matzoc-Reserva Llevant. Photo by Sebastià Torrens Marilles Foundation, together with the Balearic Center for Applied Biology (CBBA) and Ecoacsa, will calculate the marine natural capital of the Llevant Marine Reserve in Mallorca.The stock of habitats and marine species –our natural capital– generate goods and services for our society. Some of them, such us fisheries or tourism, are visible and can be easily calculated; Others, like the feeling of well-being or enjoyment, are more abstract and difficult to measure. Natural capital accounting makes it possible to visualize the relationship between the natural environment, the economy and human well-being; and it facilitates decision-making by governments and companies for a better conservation of our natural heritage.The objective of the project is to evaluate the contribution of the Marine Reserve of Llevant of fishing interest (to the of Eastern Mallorca) to the local and regional economy, through traditional fishing and leisure activities related to the marine and coastal environment, among others. The aim is to measure the extent, condition and value of the goods and services of the marine reserve and to identify its beneficiaries. Another purpose of the project is to offer data on the benefits obtained (and could be obtained) from investing in the recovery of degraded marine habitats and the conservation of Balearic marine biodiversity. Ultimately, the project wants to make visible the importance of conserving marine ecosystems of the reserve so that the benefits they generate can be sustained in the future.The Balearic Islands have a network of marine reserves and protected areas whose value and benefits have often gone unnoticed. The Marine Reserve of fishing interest of Llevant in Mallorca has been chosen due to the quality of the scientific information available; the history associated with its declaration and the relevance of the participation of the economic sectors involved in its declaration and management; also due to the fact that the reserve is managed jointly and exemplary by the state and autonomous fisheries authorities.As coordinator of Interreg project actions in the Balearic Islands, Marilles Foundation will allocate € 60,000 to carry out the study. The Spanish consultancy Ecoacsa will develop the natural capital accounting system and a guide for its application to other MPAs - with the support of the British consultancy Eftec. The Balearic Center for Applied Biology (CBBA) will carry out field-based work, which will consist of gathering information and perception from local actors.  Image: Detail of a grouper fish.  Foto: Manu San Félix The marine environment provides us multiple benefits: from the fish we eat, to the enjoyment of bathing and diving in the sea. The more we preserve the medium, the more benefits we obtain. Marine protected areas are an excellent tool to guarantee multiple benefits, but we are often not aware of all that they contribute to our economy and society. This project will allow us to better visualize the relationship between a healthy marine environment and economic health and human well-being. Investing in conservation of the marine environment pays off”. Aniol Esteban, Director of Marilles Foundation Share It is very motivating to advance in a field that will undoubtedly provide economic arguments to justify the maintenance and expansion of the resources that MPAs need. We will have useful information for the community of AMP managers in the Balearic Islands. At a minimum, we ensure that the experience reaches 124 organizations that are part of MedPAN managing a total of 110 AMPs in 21 countries. ” Toni Font, Project Coordinator Share The scientific evidence shows that believing that nature will continue to provide us with the goods and services necessary for our prosperity and well-being is no longer sustainable. However, this reality is not perceived at scale and with due interest by a wide spectrum of society. Through this project and the application of the natural capital approach, we tackle the exciting challenge of highlighting the many benefits that MPAs conservation generates for the Balearic society and economy. The health of our marine ecosystems depends on the good health of our homes and businesses. ” David Álvarez, Executive Director of Ecoacsa Share Fortunately, awareness regarding marine environment preservation -reflected in many initiatives, including the AMP declaration- is a concept that has already permeated society. However, there are still many citizens who do not find it profitable to dedicate resources to conserving assets that do not provide direct and tangible benefits. That is why I see this initiative so interesting, because apart from facilitating decision-making to managers responsible to MPAs, it can help convince those skeptics.” Benjamí Reviriego, environmental consultant of CBBA Share What is natural capital? 'Natural capital' takes into account the relationship between natural assets, the services they provide, and the benefits society derives from them. The marine environment provides multiple goods and services to the Balearic society, such as food, climate regulation and multiple recreational opportunities. It is essential to improve knowledge about the values that sea and coasts bring to economy to improve its management and invest the necessary resources to protect it. European project on marine protected areas (MPAs) Despite the increased coverage of MPAs in the Mediterranean, the objective of maintaining marine biodiversity is far from being met. MPAs face many challenges and have multiple deficiencies in the provision of legal instruments and financial resources, which determine the availability of technical and human resources. The Balearic Islands are not an exception in this regard.The objective of the European project Interreg Med MPA Networks it is to contribute to the effective management of Mediterranean MPAs, by proposing solutions in four aspects: effective management, small-scale fisheries management, conservation of mobile species and sustainable financing.Interreg Med MPA is coordinated by MedPAN and brings together ten Mediterranean partners, mainly AMP management bodies from seven countries: Albania, Croatia, France, Greece, Italy, Slovenia and Spain. Marilles Foundation participates as a partner and has the mission of coordinating the implementation of a marine natural capital accounting system in the AMP of  Llevant.Marilles will export the experience of projects on MPAs in the Balearic Islands and other regions of Spain, while importing examples from other parts of the Mediterranean that may be of interest. The results derived from the pilot project in the Llevant will be connected to those obtained in Spain by the project LIFE IP Intemares, by Biodiversity Foundation, which aims to achieve a network of marine spaces of the Natura 2000 Network managed effectively. The recommendations that emerge from this collaborative work will be aimed at supporting policy improvements at international, European and national levels.  Why natural capital accounts are useful Natural capital accounts allow us to have a perspective on the state of our natural capital, its evolution and how its improvement or deterioration affects its ability to continue providing services in the future.This information enables correct decisions to be made, both from public and private institutions, to identify investment priorities, improve management and invest in conservation. All this opens the doors to the possibility of creating a medium and long-term conservation program; a 25-year program, as it has been developed in other countries.Natural assets must be managed in order to obtain products and services. For example, fisheries production depends on marine habitats, the quality of waters and currents, and physical factors that guarantee the life cycle of many species. But it is also necessary the effort of fishermen (human capital), boats and nets (physical capital) and all the services and infrastructure. Image: Fish market. Photo: Marilles Foundation Image: Canoeing in Menorca. Photo: David Arquimbau Press release and photos ...

During our involvement along with another experts in the second preparatory lab of the “4th edition of Madrid Cities Forum”, discussion of the organisation of this two yearly meeting was focused on urban renaturalisation and the need to increase cities resilience through Nature-Based Solutions. Some of the conclusions reached during debating are that cities are disconnected from natural environment and in many cases they are also detached from peripheral realities. This leads to the need of enabling an appropriate ‘strategic planning’ and efficient communication to “make progress towards a regenerative system” more similar to how nature works. Our Executive Director, David Álvarez, highlighted the key role that natural capital approaches and its associated accounting plays in the understanding the value that nature provides to cities. In this regard, he stated that work under way to develop environmental accounting models and growing or wealth indicators that go beyond GDP at European and global scales, to help people to understand the value of nature. David also emphasized that important training and dissemination work is needed so that the relevance that natural assets and ecosystem services that environment provides gets across to society and business sector. “ We are not talking about profound changes, but to have a range of basic knowledge to integrate biodiversity. Technical capacity exists and we know a lot so that what it is needed is the willingness to chage”, he outlined. Read the whole article published in Ciudad Sostenible (page 36). Comparte Facebook-f Twitter Linkedin-in ...

The third edition of the Conference Series of Business Economy organised by the Teaching Unit of Business Organisation (UDOE) from the Superior Technical of Forest Engineering and Natural Environment (Polytechnic University of Madrid) is already running. As in the two previous editions, Ecoacsa will participate. In this occasion, our Executive Director will present a conference on the “How sustainability can be financed." This session will take place on April 30th at 15:00 pm.Current society, composed by numerous agents including business sector, need to address multiple risks associated with its activities not previously considered as priorities but which are becoming increasingly important. Risks management associated with natural capital and how to incorporate this aspect to a sustainable finance system are beginning to be a clear necessity to be addressed.If you are interested in registering to the conference, click on the following link. Click here for further information on the conference. Share Facebook-f Twitter Linkedin-in ...

Nature is essential to the future of the planet, but natural resources are being used up faster than the Earth can replace them. Through understanding and considering the risks and opportunities created by nature, businesses can make better decisions that benefit themselves, society and the planet as a whole.We Value Nature is an EU Horizon 2020 three-year campaign that seeks to boost uptake of the use of natural thinking, natural capital accounting, nature-based solutions and green infrastructure by businesses across Europe to make valuing nature the new normal. These approaches can contribute substantially to a sustainable and resilient economy, which is crucial in the context of the current ecological and climate crisis where environmental risks continue to dominate the global business and economic agenda.Considering the growing risk of climate change and natural disasters, there is a clear sense of urgency to integrate nature into the decision-making processes of the public and private sector accelerating the mainstreaming through different approaches such as natural capital assessment, natural capital accounting (NCA), Nature-based Solutions (NbS), Green infrastructure (GI) and ecosystem-based approaches.In order to encourage governments to take comprehensive action to reverse nature loss and restore the planet’s vital natural systems, the business community has a critical role to play in demonstrating that the safeguarding of nature makes economic sense, also in identifying the policies and mechanisms needed for global systemic and transformative change. To foster a sense of shared ownership over the agreements and outcomes, the private and public sector can benefit from pursuing joint action.We Value Nature is currently carrying out together with Ecoacsa a pilot project to identify opportunities to strengthen collaboration between the public and private sector through assessing the options, benefits and best practices of protecting nature, enhancing the functions of ecosystems and restoring degraded land in a specific nature area in the Mediterranean area, Cabo de Gata-Níjar (Andalusia, Spain), by reinforcing the integration of natural capital in decision-making processes.To identify different natural capital approaches that benefit local stakeholders from public and private sectors and society In order to achieve this, we are searching for case studies that demonstrate successful actions for valuation of natural capital, ecosystem restoration, nature conservation and the effective integration of ecosystem services approaches in decision-making. The case studies will be assessed and the most successful ones in terms of demonstrated leadership and results will be compiled into a publication of best practices to support interested public and private sector stakeholders to learn and replicate these actions.  Case studies that could be eligible should come from ecotourism sector, eco-agriculture, and agroforestry. Assessment of case studies Located in a dry and semi-arid habitat in the Mediterranean coastal protected area (in the stream southeast of the Iberian Peninsula in the most arid part of Europe) Extension: it covers 46,000 hectares, of which 12,000 hectares are in the marine zone to a depth of 60 meters Arid climate (conditioned by the proximity of the Sahara Desert and the influence during most of the year of the Azores anticyclone) Low precipitation rain (rainfall below 200 mm a year) Average yearly temperature between 15-22 °C Abundance of semi-arid plant formations with fan palms Together with numerous endemic species specific to the zone are many other species characteristics of Saharan flora In this area there could be found different protected species (fauna & flora) Intensive greenhouse agriculture and increasingly, the tourism and tertiary sector) Protection classifications: Maritime and Terrestrial Natural Park, Specially Protected Bird Area (SPBA), Internationally Important Wetland (Ramsar Convention), Geopark, Specially Protected Area of Importance for the Mediterranean (SPAIM) Selected projects will be assessed according to objectives, scope, level of ambition, impacts, and dependencies on natural capital, valuation (qualitative, quantitative, and monetary), lessons learnt, project funding, and integration in the decision-making process. We Value Nature will profile projects that demonstrate how fostering a mutual understanding of the different approaches to landscape restoration and collaboration and integration of natural capital in decision making and practice can enhance benefits for all stakeholders from public and private sectors and society. The focus will be on showcasing a variety of natural capital approaches that benefit local stakeholders from the public and private sector and that offer potential for replication and new partnerships between key stakeholders The selected projects will be included in a final report, which will be publicly available and presented in different relevant workshops and meetings in Europe. All case studies proceeding from the open call that are not finally selected will be included in a specific annex to the final report. It will consist of a list of case studies and proposed uptake as a natural capital case studies, in case they fulfil the requirements. How to submit a case study? Provide a short description of the project and the natural capital approaches developed including objectives, impacts and lessons learnt. This information can be shared on the basis of existing project documentation or via links to online information.Please submit your case study by email to jesuscarrasco@ecoacsa.com by the 3rd of April 2020Successful case studies to be profiled by We Value Nature will be notified before end of April 2020.Link to the call published in We Value Nature website.  Share Facebook-f Twitter Linkedin-in ...

Interview with David Álvarez, Executive Director of Ecoacsa El Ágora - diario del agua In this interview in el Ágora - diario del agua, our Executive Director,  explains how natural capital approaches addresses water protection, biodiversity conservation and climate change adaptation in a holistic manner, instead of separately. David also emphasises that natural capital thinking incorporates not only a vision of the impacts, but also a vision of the dependencies on nature, and in particularly it includes a value proposition. That is, why nature and natural capital is important to business and society.  This approach seeks to incorporate an integral valuation of impacts and dependencies, which is precisely one of the reasons why business are not taking natural capital into consideration. Large part of the business sector is not taking into account impacts that business operations have on natural capital, or what are their dependencies from it. In order for companies to be aware of the relevance that natural capital has for their business, the concept of "economic valuation" of the relationship between business and nature is incorporated. This allows to know how relevant is the relationship between business and nature in economic terms. During the interview, David also stresses that innovation has a key role given that natural capital does not stop being a transformative element, a new paradigm that requires research on what are the best valuation techniques, which tools can be used, or what new communication instruments are more adequate. He also points out that investment in natural capital has to be seen as an investment rather than a expenditure, and that thanks to climate policies business sector interest in biodiversity and natural capital is growing because organisations are realising that climate change and biodiversity cannot be dissociated. Comparte Facebook-f Twitter Linkedin-in ...

European Business and nature summit Bulding actions for nature and people Conscious of the need to address the ecological and climate crisis that we face, leading public and private organisations have joined forces to convene in Madrid in the framework of the European Business and Nature Summit (EBNS) more than 300 professionals from all economic and social sectors to strengthen their commitment on halting the loss of biodiversity and ensure the health of ecosystems. Globally, we have been underestimating, or ignoring, the risks associated to continuous loss of nature and its services, which has led us to the current environmental emergency. We need nature to survive and thrive. Stable climate, fresh air, minerals and clean water, healthy soil and pollinators that nurtures our crops are dependent upon the good state of preservation of nature. It is urgent to guarantee the good health of ecosystem services -the benefits that flow from nature to people and underpin human well-being and economy, which requires to get on board in this mission as many decision-makers as possible. To help business and finance sectors to better mainstream the impacts and dependencies that their operations and portfolios have on nature, the EU Business and Biodiversity platform (B@B), Ecoacsa, Fundación Empresa y Clima, Fundación Biodiversidad from the Spanish Ministry for Ecological Transition –through the Spanish Business and Biodiversity Initiative (IEEB)- and the Ministry of Environment of Finland have gathered in the EBNS –the largest event within the Natural Capital Week 2019– more than 300 leaders and other voices at all levels of organisations around the world to demonstrate how nature can be a powerful ally in global efforts to revert the loss of biodiversity, limit climate change and its impacts on people and the planet. The two-days conference has been attended by representatives from Australia, Belgium, Brasil, Canada, Colombia, Finland, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and United States. Close to 80 speakers have contributed to the agenda of the EBNS, who have shared real examples, methologies, partnerships, iniciatiatives and commitments with the aim at generating net positive impact for nature. The summit has been moderated by Eva Zabey, Executive Director of Business for Nature, and some of the global organisations and European policy, conservation and business leaders who have joined her at the EBNS are Daniel Calleja, European Commission DG Environment; Hugo Morán, Spanish Secretary of State for Environment from the Ministry of Ecological Transition; Terhi Lehtonen, Secretary of State of Finland; Anne Larigauderie, Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES); Peter White, Ambassador for Biodiversity and CBD COP 15 at WBCSD; Marco Lambertini, General Director of WWF International; Mark Gough, CEO of Capitals Coalition; Valentín Alfaya, president of the Spanish Green Growth Group (GECV), Joaquín Garralda, president of Spainsif, and David Álvarez, CEO of Ecoacsa. Collaborating entities to the EBNS are the Association for Sustainability and Progress of Societies (ASYPS), Business for Nature, the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), Fundación Conama, Fundación Global Nature, Fundación “la Caixa”, the Natural Capital Coalition and We Value Nature. The congress is financially supported by the European Commission and Fundación Biodiversidad, with contributions from the Natural Capital Summit, Bayer, Calidad Pascual, Everis Ingeniería, Ferrovial and Grupo Red Eléctrica. Comparte Facebook-f Twitter Linkedin-in ...