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January 2024 Newsletter

In This Month's Newsletter:

  • The Natural Capital journey: from accounting to TNFD 

    • How natural capital accounting helped United Utilities to become a TNFD Early Adopter

  • Every £1 invested in Scottish nature could raise £1.35 for the economy

    • Our work with WSP for the Scottish Government reveals the economic returns and jobs created

  • envecon 2024: agenda announced!

    • Early Bird tickets available until January 31

The Natural Capital journey: from accounting to TNFD

How natural capital accounting helped United Utilities to become a TNFD early adopter

TNFD announced the list of 320 early adopters last week, one which is United Utilities, who also published their natural capital accounts as part of their journey to adopting TNFD. See all their reports here.

Natural capital accounting is most useful when it’s a dynamic part of decision making, and that’s why United Utilities’ statement on our work is so important: "This account will influence how we prioritise our investments and will feed into our annual disclosure reporting (Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures)". The accounts can then show progress towards achieving their objectives for climate resilience, resilient water supply, and serving the community through access to nature.

We are proud to have supported United Utilities in this journey since 2012, back when the practice was called “Tripple Bottom Line Reporting”. That first report covered only the land the company owned. Later editions looked beyond their owned land to the whole of the North West, to better understand how catchments can be managed collaboratively beyond ownership boundaries.

Most recently we supported them to produce their 2021 Natural Capital Accounts (aligned to BS8632:2021), which compares the changes from the 2016 baseline for their 56,000 hectares of land.

Image source: page 9,UU Corporate Natural Capital Account, access here 

Every £1 invested in Scottish nature could raise £1.35 for the economy

Our work with WSP for the Scottish Government reveals the economic return and jobs created

Working with WSP, we assessed the cumulative and cross-sector economic benefits of natural capital investments for the Scottish Government to secure nature-related outcomes by 2030. The approach mapped the 25 Year Environment Plan outcomes (e.g. clean water, protect and/or restore biodiversity, reduce flood risk) across different types of natural capital interventions (e.g. woodland creation and management, peatland restoration, regenerative agriculture).

Through this work, we found that private investment to address the GFI nature finance gap from 2022 – 2032 could reach £12.5bn. With this level of investment in nature restoration activities, our work estimates an output effect of £17bn to the Scottish economy. For every £1 invested in nature in Scotland, £1.35 would be generated for the economy.

This level of investment could create around 146,000 direct and 197,000 indirect jobs, with the largest impacts coming from silviculture and other forestry services, accounting for an output effect of £4.4bn and 66,990 jobs created.

Image: Autumn Birch trees in Scotland, Rob Fraser:

envecon 2024: agenda announced!

Early Bird Tickets Available Until Jan 31

The agenda for envecon 2024, UKNEE’s annual applied environment economics conference is out!

This year's conference showcases the latest research through sessions on influencing behaviours through policy, distributional impacts of policy, financing nature and climate solutions, and changes and challenges for policy and investment. The conference will also feature a panel session on multidisciplinary working in the marine environment and a keynote speech from the Director of Cambridge Zero, Emily Shuckburgh.

Discounted early bird tickets are still available until January 31st: Click here to purchase

To view the agenda, visit the UKNEE site here.


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