Can a Nature Repair Market Realistically Thrive? Data Suggests That It Is Unlikely to Succeed

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Governments alone should not be responsible for the drastic decline of numerous ecosystems. 

Situated as such, the attractiveness of nature repair markets becomes readily apparent. Employing private capital to revive and conserve nature is a fantastic solution; it’s no surprise that the Albanese government is pushing forward with its bill for these markets and soliciting public comments.

The government has estimated that undoing the environmental harm done over decades in Australia is too costly for them and individual landholders to cover. Therefore, we need a solution to address this alarming issue.

The thought of carbon credits is beautiful – something that has been done for our planet. It’s had little success in execution due to being subject to deceitful gaming and costly integrity enforcement. 

To truly make an environmental impact, stricter environmental regulations such as banning land clearing are much more viable options.

Labor’s proposal banks on a modified and enlarged biodiversity stewardship program, initially geared towards farmers by the Morrison government. It is a concept that has been introduced previously.

Minister Tanya Plibersek asserted that the market is an answer to consumer demand. 

Businesses tell me all the time that they want to invest in nature because their shareholders, customers, and staff are demanding it,” she has said.

If successful, consultants’ glowing forecasts of the nature credit market could increase its current value from A$7 billion a year to an astonishing $137 billion in Australia by 2050. It has been estimated by PricewaterhouseCoopers and further affirmed by McKinsey’s research.

Worldwide enthusiasm for voluntary nature markets is escalating, as witnessed by the Nature Finance initiatives, ​the Taskforce on Nature Markets​ efforts, and the Biodiversity Credit Alliance in just the last two years.

Why the doubt? In a nutshell, it cannot be easy to access private capital and funnel it into nature-friendly practices.

For these initiatives to succeed, they must be entirely legitimate. To make the credits viable for investment and tradable, a governance structure should be established along with measurement systems, certification processes, registration procedures, trading activities, monitoring reports accounting practices, auditing measures, and a bureaucracy dedicated to administering consulting advising in all areas.

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