BEIA Consult participated in Worldwaterweek GoToWebinar on 26th August 2020.
The impacts of COVID-19 and its health-related, economic and societal consequences have laid bare the necessity of resilience in our economic systems. Given the high level of uncertainty surrounding the impacts of climate change, the ‘new normal’ has to include a heightened focus on resilience in future investments. Investing in nature-based solutions (NBS) at the level of a landscape offers such resilience: they have the potential to stimulate economic growth, deliver social equity and help mitigate and adapt to climate change. However, while the business case for NBS is clear and multiple financing mechanisms exist, scaling NBS into mainstream practice remains an ideal for many institutions. Is it because the project pipeline for bankable NBS projects is insufficient? Is it because internal systems are not set up to make clear comparisons between green and gray infrastructure? Or are the important gaps in evidence, administrative process, or political will? This session will explore the opportunities for scaling landscape-based approaches through innovative financing mechanisms such as corporate funds, and tease out, through audience participation, the unique opportunity in light of COVID-19 that corporates, governments and other stakeholders have to bring a new narrative into their organizations: that NBS are a viable alternative to grey infrastructure, and that investing in NBS at landscape level at scale is not only a viable opportunity, but a primordial step to truly build resilient business and economies. Speakers: John Matthews, AGWA Nathanial Matthews, Global Resilience Partnership Sara Traubel, South Pole James Dalton, IUCN Keiron Brand, WWF