Ministers from across Africa come together to discuss the economics of biodiversity

An online event today will bring together experts and Ministers from Kenya, Rwanda, and the UK to inform an upcoming independent global review on biodiversity.
 

Today, Stockholm Environment Institute and Kenya’s National Treasury are co-hosting a meeting with Ministers from Kenya, Rwanda, and the UK, alongside experts from across Africa, to discuss the independent, global Dasgupta Review on the Economics of Biodiversity.

The meeting will gather perspectives from stakeholders across the continent that will help to inform the Dasgupta Review’s final report, due in autumn this year.

The Dasgupta Review is an independent global review on the economics of biodiversity commissioned by HM Treasury – the UK’s economic and finance ministry. It explores the sustainability of our engagements with nature: what we take from it; how we transform what we take from it and return to it; and why we have disrupted nature’s processes.

The Review is led by Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta (Frank Ramsey Professor Emeritus of Economics, University of Cambridge).

“The Review is global in scope and this meeting is vitally important to ensure that the depth and breadth of expertise and experience across Africa is reflected in our work," Dasgupta said. “Biodiversity loss poses serious risks to our economies, so I am delighted that representatives from several African Ministries join us today.”

The Review’s Interim Report was published in April 2020. It set out the Review’s central economic and scientific concepts. The final report will also set out what we must urgently do differently to address biodiversity loss and enhance our collective wealth and well-being, and that of our descendants.

“Biodiversity and natural capital underpins the major sectors of the economies of many African countries, including agriculture, health and tourism. Biodiversity loss therefore has a significant impact on national economies, and affects millions of people in both urban and rural areas in Africa that depend on biodiversity for food security and livelihoods,” said Philip Osano, Acting Director of SEI’s Africa Centre. “The Dasgupta Review is therefore critical to inform policies and actions that are required in the economic and financial sectors in the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.”

Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta is supported by an Advisory Panel drawn from experts in public policy, science, economics, finance and business.


Quotes from Ministers and experts on today's meeting

‘’The Dasgupta Review on the economics of biodiversity views the global economy as embedded within Nature and recognizes the limits Nature places on the economy. This has far reaching implications for economic and financial policy making at national and global levels. This also has fundamental implications for corporate, collective and individual behavior at the level of firms, communities and citizens. The Report could not have come at a better time. As the world seeks to ‘build back better’, pairing post COVID-19 recovery and resilience strategies with ambitious climate and biodiversity actions, the report offers fresh, innovative and bold ideas for urgent action.’’

-Cosmas Milton Obote Ochieng, member of the Dasgupta Review's Advisory Panel and Director, African Natural Resources Centre, African Development Bank

 

“Kenya and its National Treasury are uniquely placed to aid the Dasgupta Review in its efforts, as we recognize that biodiversity is central to Kenya’s economic development. Over the last decade, the National Treasury and Planning, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, have increased budgetary allocation significantly to support biodiversity conservation hotspots, such as: restoration of water towers; aquatic ecosystems through enhanced budgetary support to the blue economy; support to the Greening Kenya Campaign through the economic stimulus package under the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan; development of economic incentives for nature conservation; and the undertaking of natural accounting for the valuation of ecosystem services such as afforestation, water harvesting, and conservation measures, among others.”

-The Hon. Amb. Ukur Yatani, Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury and Planning

 

"African nations are responsible for just 2–3% of global emissions, but the continent is set to be the worst affected by the devastating impacts of climate change. This year, the UK-commissioned Dasgupta Review on the economics of biodiversity will set out the urgent changes that countries need to make to both enhance biodiversity and deliver sustainable economic prosperity. Coronavirus has provided a stark reminder of what happens when humanity's relationship with nature breaks down. As CoP26 President, the UK will partner with African nations to build back better. We have an opportunity to protect and restore nature, reducing our exposure to deadly viruses and climate impacts."

-Susie Kitchens, UK Representative to the UN Environment Programme


Click here to see the event’s full program

Watch an interview on Kenya Television Network about the Review with SEI’s Philip Osano and The National Treasury’s Peter Odhengo
 

Notes to editors

Background

  • The Review’s final report will be published in autumn 2020, and ahead of the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in May 2021 (due to take place in Kunming, China).

  • More information about the Dasgupta Review is available here.

  • A full program of the event is available here.

Organizers

The event is co-hosted by Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) and Kenya’s National Treasury, in collaboration with the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the Dasgupta Review Team, based in HM Treasury.

Information about the event

The event is on Wednesday, 22 July 2020 from 11:00 – 13:30 GMT [Nairobi 14:00-16:30 | London 12:00-14:30] and attendance is by invitation only. If you would like to attend, please contact Cassilde Muhoza at cassilde.muhoza@sei.org. Participants include representatives from the African Governments (including both Finance and Economic Planning and Environment and Biodiversity related sectors), Regional Economic Communities (RECs), United Nations agencies, intergovernmental organizations, the diplomatic community, research and academia, private sector and industry, development agencies, and civil society groups.
 

For interviews, please contact:

Philip Osano, Acting Centre Director, Stockholm Environment Institute
philip.osano@sei.org
+254 (0) 711 034507

Brenda Ochola, Communications Officer, Stockholm Environment Institute
brenda.ochola@sei.org
+46 73 707 8613

 

For further information, please contact:

Kenya’s National Treasury

Mr. Peter Odhengo

Head, Climate Finance and Green Economy Unit

odhengo@gmail.com

 

UK HM Treasury

Mr. Ant Parham

Economics of Biodiversity Review

Ant.Parham@hmtreasury.gov.uk 

 

Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI)

Dr. Philip Osano

Acting Center Director, SEI Africa

philip.osano@sei.org

 

African Development Bank (AfDB)

Dr. Cosmas Milton Obote Ochieng

Director, African Natural Resources Centre (ANRC)

C.OCHIENG@AFDB.ORG

About Us

Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) is an international non-profit research and policy organization that tackles environment and development challenges. We connect science and decision-making to develop solutions for a sustainable future for all. Across our eight centres in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas, we engage with policy processes, development action and business practice throughout the world. www.sei.org @SEIresearch @SEIclimate

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