What code is in the image? This sector employs over 4 million rural and creates about thousand jobs in the field of food. This sector plays a key role in the macro-economic country. Also, it is a reminder of the heavy responsibility of this sector on the food security of 30 million consumers.
But how much does depleting diamond mines cut into Botswana's overall economic health? If climate change leads to reduced rainfall in the country, how much would be lost by diverting water from agriculture?
And in Australia, the government has found that pesticides used in farming are causing significant damage to the Great Barrier Reef. But how much might that damage affect the tourist economy that thrives around the World Heritage site?
Those countries and a handful of others have been trying to answer precisely those kinds of questions as they develop some of the world's first "green" accounting systems. Known formally as natural capital accounting, the idea of measuring the economic value of clean water, clean air, forests and ecosystems in addition to traditional measures of the market value of a country's goods and services has been gaining traction since the s.
In February, the U. Statistical Commission adopted a standardized accounting method, which advocates called a major step, essentially helping environmentalists use the same language and tools that finance ministers and economists use to measure strictly in terms of national accounts.
Now, with the approach in June of the U. Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, activists hope that green accounting's time has finally come.
This is something it is time to stop talking about and it is time to start implementing," Rachel Kyte, the World Bank's vice president for sustainable development, said recently. Kyte acknowledged that questions remain about green accounting but said countries can "learn while we're doing," and argued that the data gleaned by valuing ecosystems are critical to help governments make more sustainable decisions.
Not all assets are given a value "The lack of valuation for natural resources in the environment is one of the major reasons for the continuing decline of ecosystems," said Glenn-Marie Lange, a senior environmental economist at the World Bank who leads a partnership known as WAVES Wealth Accounting and Valuation of Ecosystem Services aimed at helping countries develop and implement natural accounting systems.
Australia, for example, already has a program of annual environmental accounts for water, energy, natural resources and timber, as well as subsoil assets like coal. Now it's starting to look at assets like the Great Barrier Reef to better understand what degradation caused by agriculture or climate change might mean for the country as a whole.
But what is the value of the Great Barrier Reef? Upstream, he noted, farmers are making decisions that are rational for their livelihoods -- using pesticides and fertilizer, for example -- and it's clear that those decisions are corroding the world's largest coral reef system. Accounting for the eco-wealth of the reef as well as for the deterioration, he said, could help the government decide to encourage farmers to plant elsewhere, or perhaps provide payments for planting trees instead of agriculture.
And in Botswana, the government is directing two initiatives to try to make the economic value of the country's natural resources tangible. Ruud Jansen, the chief technical adviser for Botswana's Ministry of Finance and Development Poverty-Environment Initiative, said the country has been working for more than a year to move out of theory and into the practice of understanding how to value the country's diamonds as well as its delta.
Balancing diamonds and fresh water "In Botswana, we feel the value of our natural resources, though assumed, has not been made very clear," Jansen said. Working with both the U.
Environment Programme and the World Bank, the government is trying to determine how much investment in keeping the delta healthy translates into freshwater availability as well as tourism dollars in Botswana, he said.
Meanwhile, he said, they're also taking stock of the country's diamonds. Right now, he said, the government estimates its exportation of minerals will peak within the next decade.
At the same time, there's been little work to understand exactly what the country's stock is.The green economy must be defined through precise and short-term commitments on energy, climate, oceans, health, water and other issues where achieving sustinability is critical.
Are you ready to join the Green Economy? Trudy Heller, Ph.D. (Wharton ’93) has opened the eyes of hundreds of professionals to the business opportunity in the green economy over the past two vetconnexx.com About Trudy.
In short, conventional investment strategy is a crucial part of the architecture of the unsustainable economy and offers little in the way of a reliable basis for the green economy To reiterate a point we made earlier, the green economy cannot simply be characterized as more of the same with a smattering of cleantech investments thrown in.
The GGKP was established by the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment), and the World Bank to identify and address knowledge gaps in green . "The green economy is defined as an economy that results in reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities, and that aims for sustainable development without degrading the environment.
The future of economic leadership and growth is tied to green economy, according to United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres.
Mr. Guterres’ statement was part of a call to action on climate change delivered to an audience of students, academics, and business leaders on .