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Business and biodiversity (1/3): the start of our journey

By February 19, 2019 April 23rd, 2020 No Comments

Nature^Squared was founded six years ago with a clear mission: breaking the pattern of biodiversity loss and supporting businesses to make a positive impact. Not only because we are worried about endangered species but also because we believe that ecosystems and biodiversity are the basis of a healthy planet, an equal society, and a sustainable economy. Without a well-functioning planet Earth, no economic growth or happiness.

We have focused from the start on the role of the business community. With all its activities, humans have a great impact on the planet. As companies source through often complex supply chains, they have the largest impact on the planet and on the habitats of plants and animals. That is why we believe that we have to work with companies as they are key agents of change. Being truly sustainable then also means taking care of biodiversity.

Over the past few years, we have been discussing biodiversity with dozens, perhaps hundreds, of companies. We have spoken with SMEs, the board of listed companies, VNO-NCW, even our prime minister Mark Rutte; everyone wanted to hear the story of Nature^Squared. This has led to many interesting conversations where our vision of the world was greeted with enthusiasm. Yet often these conversations ended in the same way:

“Wonderful that you are doing this! Good luck!”

For us, it was clear that while companies become more and more aware of the urgency of biodiversity loss, they need clarity: what do you propose to do, what does it cost and what do you really solve? We have to offer something more concrete than starting a journey together. While this has also led to numerous exciting projects, we have now grown into an innovative project office where we work with a small, interdisciplinary team of (currently) six people on the challenge: how to get others on board to reverse the trend of biodiversity loss?

We have not forgotten about the need to provide a clear perspective on how to take action. Over the past six years, we have done our homework and have distilled key lessons based on all kinds of challenges, objections, opportunities, and arguments. We are proud to announce that we can soon provide clarity. Stay tuned because next week we will give an overview of our lessons learned.