Page 1

Biodiversity, Land Use and Ecosystems what’s happening 2017-18

Biodiversity, Land Use and Ecosystems (BLUE) what’s happening 2017-18

“We must do a more effective job of managing our biodiversity and ecosystems. We depend on them for clean air, food and water. While we need to improve the way we produce and harvest food from the land and the seas, we also need to keep the demand‑side in our minds. Policies that encourage more sustainable consumption will be critical to mainstreaming biodiversity into the global web of our economies.”

Simon Upton, OECD Environment Director


More ambitious and effective policies are needed to ensure the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystems. The OECD is continuing its strong commitment to provide guidance and good practice insights on improving biodiversity policies. With a multi‑disciplinary team drawn from across the organisation, the OECD provides a forum where governments compare policy experiences; collects and tracks biodiversity‑relevant data; and contributes analyses to develop more effective, efficient and equitable policies. This is also crucial for meeting the objectives under the Convention on Biological Diversity, as well as the Sustainable Development Goals.


Work happening 2017-18 OECD work on biodiversity, land use and ecosystems will continue addressing a number of key areas of current and emerging policy priorities. These include: •

Biodiversity Finance: Effectiveness and efficiency. This project will review the available evidence on the environmental and cost‑effectiveness of various biodiversity policies, and the advances in targeting tools that can help ensure policies deliver greater biodiversity benefits per unit of investment. (Contact:

Biodiversity, ecosystems and agricultural policies. This project will examine how to better attain synergies and minimise trade‑offs across this nexus. It will draw on experiences from a broad range of countries and summarise implications also in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals. (Contact:

Land use, agricultural production and climate change. This project will examine the interplay between ecosystems (forests and soils), climate mitigation, agriculture and food security. It will provide a review of evidence, efficiency and effectiveness of policies to manage trade‑offs and externalities involved. (Contact:

Indicators on land cover and land cover change. This project draws on the on-going international efforts for global land cover monitoring and seeks to develop policy-relevant indicators to measure land cover and land cover changes in a commensurable manner over time and across all OECD and G20 countries (and beyond) at the national and sub-national levels (regions, cities). Changes in land cover are considered as the best available proxies for pressures on biodiversity and ecosystems. (Contact:

Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Use in Latin America: Evidence from OECD Environmental Performance Reviews. Latin America is arguably the most important region in the world in which to accelerate biodiversity conservation and sustainable use efforts. This report draws on five Environmental Performance Reviews completed for Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Peru and Chile between 2013 and 2016, to assess the regions’ progress in biodiversity conservation and sustainable use, and make policy recommendations. (Contact:


Recent OECD work on biodiversity Biodiversity Offsets: Effective Design and Implementation. The publication examines the key design and implementation features that need to be considered to ensure that biodiversity offsets are environmentally effective, economically efficient, and distributionally equitable. It draws on insights and lessons from more than 40 biodiversity offset programmes worldwide, as well as three in-depth case studies from the United States, Germany and Mexico. (Contact:

Key Ingredients, Challenges and Lessons from Biodiversity Mainstreaming in South Africa: People, Products, Process. This report provides an in‑depth review of experiences and insights from mainstreaming biodiversity and development in South Africa. It describes how biodiversity considerations have been mainstreamed in five key areas, namely land-use planning, mining, water, infrastructure, and the agricultural sector. It discusses the types of barriers and challenges that have been encountered, the key ingredients and lessons learned to help ensure more effective biodiversity mainstreaming, and the role of development co-operation in supporting in mainstreaming in South Africa. Examples of key elements of success include good science, the ability to harness windows of opportunity, and ensuring genuine links to development objectives. (Contact:

The Ocean Economy in 2030. This publication explores the growth prospects for the ocean economy, its capacity for future employment creation and innovation, and its role in addressing global challenges. Special attention is devoted to the emerging ocean-based industries in light of their high growth and innovation potential, and contribution to addressing challenges such as energy security, environment, climate change and food security. (Contacts:; WHAT’S HAPPENING BLUE 2017-18 . 5

Recent OECD work on biodiversity continued... The Role of National Ecosystem Assessments in Influencing Policy Making. This report examines the role that ecosystem assessments can play in synthesising and communicating complex information, and how they can both inform and influence decision-making processes. The report draws insights from experience with National Ecosystem Assessments (NEAs) undertaken in the United Kingdom, Japan, Spain and Portugal. (Contact:

Scaling Up Finance Mechanisms for Biodiversity. This publication examines the opportunities for scaling‑up finance for biodiversity from six-called “innovative financial mechanisms” as classified under the Convention on Biological Diversity. These are environmental fiscal reform, payments for ecosystem services, biodiversity offsets, markets for green products, climate change funding, and international development finance. (Contact:

Biodiversity Policy Response Indicators. This report reviews six OECD data sources and examines their potential for establishing indicators which can contribute to monitoring progress towards two of the 2011-2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets under the Convention on Biological Diversity, namely Target 3 on Incentives and Target 20 on Resource Mobilisation. The objectives of this work were twofold: (a) to identify the indicator needs to monitor progress towards Targets 3 and 20, and (b) to examine to what extent existing relevant OECD datasets and monitoring systems can be used for these purposes, including the types of modifications to data collection methodology or classification that may be useful to better align the data sources with the indicator needs. (Contact: 6 . WHAT’S HAPPENING BLUE 2017-18

The OECD Environmental Performance Review (EPR) chapters on biodiversity assess how well the reviewed country has done in achieving its biodiversity-related objectives, in terms of both environmental effectiveness and economic efficiency of policies and measures. They provide recommendations for improving future policies and performance. These chapters also include a section on mainstreaming biodiversity into other sectors (such as agriculture, forestry, fisheries, infrastructure, and tourism). Recent EPRs with a biodiversity chapter: Chile 2016, France 2016, Brazil 2015, Poland 2015, Spain 2015. All reports are available on the EPR homepage: (Contact: The OECD also tracks policy instruments for the environment, including for biodiversity, Database of Policy Instruments for the Environment (Contact:; The OECD DAC tracks biodiversity-related development finance using the Rio marker methodology, and updates this on a regular basis. (Contact:; Valé Financing for Development in Support of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. This paper examines trends in bilateral commitments of official development assistance (ODA) targeting biodiversity objectives, drawing on OECD Development Assistance Committee’s (DAC) Creditor Reporting System (CRS), and discusses the effectiveness of these finance flows in achieving long-lasting results. Further, the paper explores how development co‑operation can support partner countries to mobilise and access other sources of finance for biodiversity, through mechanisms such as environmental fiscal reform, payments for ecosystem services, market creation mechanisms for green products, and conservation trust funds. Support can target the development of knowledge, technical skills, and strengthen governance and legal institutions. (Contacts:; WHAT’S HAPPENING BLUE 2017-18 . 7

Recent OECD work on biodiversity continued... Biodiversity and Development Co-operation. This paper considers how development co-operation is addressing the twin objectives of biodiversity conservation and sustainable use on the one hand, and development and poverty reduction on the other. It outlines how development co‑operation can a) support mainstreaming biodiversity and ecosystem services into development; b) manage for results, particularly across trade‑offs and synergies; c) incorporate monitoring and evaluating approaches into biodiversity‑related development co‑operation activities; and d) better align and harmonise providers’ activities with partner country priorities. (Contact: The Economic Feedbacks of Loss of Biodiversity and Ecosystems Services. This report by international expert Anil Markandya contributes to the CIRCLE project and examines the consequences of the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services. It does so by reviewing the main findings in the literature and key issues involved in the valuation of biodiversity and ecosystems services, as well as key issues involved in linking loss of biodiversity and ecosystems services to economic activity. The report finishes by identifying the main opportunities and obstacles in including biodiversity and eco-system services into a dynamic general equilibrium framework. (Contact: Alternative payment approaches for biodiversity conservation in agriculture. This paper develops a theoretical framework and quantitative analysis to assess costeffectiveness of various payment types to enhance biodiversity protection in agriculture. Results show that uniform payments are less efficient than other payment types, and that auctions with environmental targeting are the most cost-effective option. The analysis clearly shows that, when targeted payments are implemented, the gains from environmental targeting are large and exceed the increase in policy-related transaction costs of improved targeting. (Contact: 8 . WHAT’S HAPPENING BLUE 2017-18

Upcoming publications Marine Protected Areas: Economics, Management and Effective Policy Mixes. This publication will examine key issues that need to be considered for the effective design and implementation of marine protected areas (MPAs). Focus areas include the costs and benefits of MPAs, how to effectively site an MPA, robust monitoring and reporting frameworks, compliance and enforcement, how to scale up financing for MPAs, and the need for effective policy mixes. (Contact:

Indicators on Terrestrial and Marine Protected Areas. This paper will propose a methodology for calculating the extent of terrestrial and marine protected areas, by country, type and IUCN management categories, applying GIS analysis to the World Database on Protected Areas. The method allows summarising the data on protected areas in a more detailed and harmonised way across countries than previously available. This can provide an indication of the extent and focus of countries’ conservation efforts and also to some extent measure progress towards achieving the Aichi Targets and the Sustainable Development Goals. (Contact:

Biodiversity and Development: Mainstreaming and Managing for Results. This publication will focus on four areas namely mainstreaming biodiversity and development at the national level; at the sectoral level (e.g. in agriculture, fisheries, forestry, tourism); in development co-operation; and will explore how to monitor and evaluate biodiversity mainstreaming over time. (Contacts:;


Upcoming publications continued... Overcoming Barriers to Effective Biodiversity Policy Reform. This publication will examine the political economy elements of biodiversity policy reform. Drawing on key insights from the literature and four case studies focused on: the tax on pesticides in France, the reform of agricultural subsidies in Switzerland, individually transferable quotas in fisheries in Iceland and conservation trust funds used to finance marine protected areas in Mauritania and Guinea Bissau via the EU Fisheries Partnership Agreements, the publication will draw insights and lessons learned on overcoming barriers to biodiversity‑relevant policy reform. (Contacts:;

Green Growth Indicators 2017. This publication presents a selection of updated and new indicators to monitor the progress that OECD and G20 countries have made since the 1990s towards a greener growth model. The OECD Green Growth Strategy supports countries in fostering economic growth and development while ensuring that natural assets continue to provide the resources and environmental services on which our well‑being relies. (Contact:


The biophysical and economic consequences of the land‑water‑energy nexus. This report is part of the CIRCLE project and investigates how land, water and energy interact in the biophysical system and the economic system. This land‑water‑energy nexus is modelled through linking the Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency PBL’s spatially explicit biophysical IMAGE model with OECD’s ENV‑Linkages model. Different scenarios with a time horizon until 2060 are simulated to analyse the interconnections of bottlenecks related to the nexus. (Contact: Land use and ecosystem services in agriculture. The report will build on i) a literature review on state and trends of ecosystem services linked to agriculture, including issues related to land use; ii) a quantitative model, specifically developed for the purpose of this report, to illustrate the potential benefits of improving policy design and to investigate synergies and trade-offs between ecosystem services, importance of market and policy drivers in ecosystem service provision, and the performance of current agricultural and agri‑environmental policy package in promoting balanced set of ecosystem services; and iii) a review of selected country experiences on national ecosystem assessments and policy initiatives regarding ecosystem services linked to agriculture. On this basis, the report will give recommendations for designing and implementing policies to effectively and efficiently manage ecosystem services in agriculture. (Contact:; WHAT’S HAPPENING BLUE 2017-18 . 11

Forums for discussion Global Forum on the Environment (GFENV) - Mainstreaming Biodiversity and Development. The GFENV in 2017 will provide a platform for government officials and different stakeholders from the OECD and developing countries to discuss and examine the opportunities and challenges with regard to reflecting the values of biodiversity and ecosystems in national economic and development policy and across different sectors, such as agriculture, fisheries and tourism. It will also explore how monitoring of mainstreaming can be undertaken, as well as the role of development co‑operation. This event will draw on on-going work of the OECD and is relevant to a number of the Sustainable Development Goals. (Contact:; Green Growth and Sustainable Development (GGSD) Forum Greening the Ocean Economy. The GGSD Forum in 2017 will explore the opportunities and challenges surrounding the development of the ocean economy and the policies that are required to ensure a more sustainable future. Potential areas of focus for green growth opportunities include an assessment of the employment implications, the innovations required in science and technology to address key environmental issues, as well as the policies and measures to conserve and sustainably use marine and ocean resources and ecosystems (including fisheries management, the effective design and management of marine protected areas and addressing marine plastic litter) in both developed and developing countries. Other policies, including those related to trade and investment would also be considered. All of these areas draw on on-going work at the OECD and are of direct relevance to Sustainable Development Goal 14 on the conservation and sustainable use of oceans, seas and marine resources. (Contact:;

Visit our websites

Join the discussion @OECD_ENV and #MainstreamBiodiversity

Š OECD 2016

November 2016

Biodiversity, Land Use and Ecosystems: What's happening 2017-18  

More ambitious and effective policies are needed to ensure the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystems. The OECD is...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you