AGER Report published on green recovery

The Advisory Group on Economic Recovery (AGER) was established in April 2020 by the Scottish Government. The Group was set up to provide independent, expert advice on Scotland’s economic recovery, once the immediate emergency, created by coronavirus, had subsided.  Led by Benny Higgins, the Group considered how economic recovery could increase wellbeing, fairness and inclusivity, and build on opportunities to

Scottish Natural Capital Accounts 2020 published

The second Scottish Natural Capital Accounts (NCA) were published in March 2020, by The Office for National Statistics (ONS), for the Scottish Government. The Accounts highlight the relative importance of services provided by Scottish natural capital, and contain estimates for the quantity and value of those services.    The report builds upon last year's inaugural NCA, in what continues to be a developing area

Scottish Conservation Finance – A ‘Route Map to £1 Billion’

What is "Conservation Finance"? Conservation Finance is an innovative and emerging investment sector, that seeks to leverage large-scale financial investment into nature. It aims to provide both a market-rate return on the investment, but also offer other economic, environmental and social benefits, helping us move towards a well-being economy with a positive conservation impact. It seeks to address a fundamental

Testing natural capital approaches in land-based businesses

Since 2017 a number of organisations have been working to trial the Natural Capital Protocol and other natural capital approaches, for a variety of land-based businesses in Scotland. These trials have been pioneering projects within the UK, with some the first of their type anywhere in the world.      What is the Natural Capital Protocol?    The Natural Capital Protocol (NCP) aims to improve decision-making processes

Future research priorities for the Scottish Forum

The Scottish Forum recently submitted our priorities to RESAS, (Rural and Environment Science and Analytical Services), part of the Environment and Forestry Directorate of The Scottish Government. This was in response to a draft consultation seeking priorities for the next five year cycle of research on the environment, natural resources and agriculture, beginning in 2022.    The Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Research Programme is a large,

Oceans of Value – New project out for tender

The Scottish Forum Steering Group member, Scottish Wildlife Trust, recently launched their Oceans of Value project, based in Orkney. This aims to investigate two different approaches for valuing the marine environment – stakeholder valuation, and natural capital valuation. Led by Marine Planning Manager, Dr Sam Collin, the project has been carrying out interviews with various stakeholders in Orkney over the past

Scottish Natural Heritage Natural Capital Accounts Published

Scottish Natural Heritage recently worked with consultancy Economics for the Environment (eftec) to test a natural capital accounting approach for the land they own, or substantially manage, as National Nature Reserves.  The natural capital balance sheet, published in December 2019, is the first to be produced for SNH, and focuses on ecosystem services that flow from SNH land including: food,

Scottish Circular Economy Bill 2020

Achieving a circular economy is one of five strategic outcomes for the Scottish Forum on Natural Capital, so we are delighted that the Scottish Government has outlined plans to introduce a Circular Economy Bill in the 2019/20 Programme for Government. Circular Economy – what is it? A “circular economy” seeks to move away from a linear “take, make, dispose” model

Financing Nature: Closing the Global Biodiversity Financing Gap

An important and timely report is published this week by The Paulson Institute, The Nature Conservancy, and Cornell Atkinson Centre for Sustainability. It makes the economic case for valuing nature, and explores innovative financing mechanisms, policies, and solutions that could help close the biodiversity financing gap. What is the “biodiversity financing gap”?  This is the gap between the amount currently spent

New biodiversity guidance to accompany the Natural Capital Protocol.

  The Capitals Coalition and the Cambridge Conservation Initiative recently published new guidance, aiming to enable businesses and financial institutions to better value biodiversity in their decision-making processes. The guidance is the latest in a growing suite of complementary guides for the Natural Capital Protocol. What is the Natural Capital Protcol? The Natural Capital Protocol (NCP) is a decision-making framework