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Measuring Ecosystem Condition – A Primer for Business

Measuring Ecosystem Condition – A Primer for Business provides an overview of the principles and criteria for biodiversity measurement and valuation and guidance on how to apply these principles in practice. The Primer provides an overview of screening and measuring ecosystem conditions in different decision-making contexts

The Primer focuses on the importance of ecosystem condition for understanding the impacts and dependencies of business on nature. Ecosystem condition is defined as the overall quality of an ecosystem measured in terms of its biotic and abiotic characteristics.

The primer provides approaches for assessing ecosystem condition at a given location and discusses the concept of reference conditions. It also provides guidance on measuring changes in ecosystem condition to assess impacts, and tracking changes in ecosystem condition within corporate biodiversity accounting to assess performance. The primer is designed to help businesses and financial institutions meet the requirements of emerging disclosure frameworks and achieve the goals of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework.

Key messages include:

  • Metrics of ecosystem condition reflect elements of ecosystem composition, structure and function.
  • Measurement approaches for ecosystem condition vary in their underlying methods
  • Increasing numbers of regional and global data layers are available to screen locations for potential risks and opportunities relating to ecosystem condition.
  • Measuring the state of ecosystems directly is the most robust way to record actual changes in ecosystem condition.
  • New methods, data and thinking around ecosystem condition are rapidly developing and the assessment of impacts and dependencies on ecosystem condition should be seen as an iterative process with flexibility to continually improve approaches over time

Download the Measuring Ecosystem Condition – A Primer for Business here.

Download the Align Recommendations for a Standard on Corporate Biodiversity Measurement and Valuation in full here.

Two additional Guidance documents have been released as supplements to the main Align recommendations, provide fictional case studies, and point to available methods and tools for measuring impacts and dependencies at site level, and supply chain level respectively

Download the Measuring and Valuing Biodiversity at Site Level supplement here.

Download the Measuring and Valuing Biodiversity Across Supply Chains supplement here.

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