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Nature-first policy can crate 395m jobs by 2030: WEF

Issac John /Dubai Filed on July 15, 2020

(Photo by M. Sajjad)

In the post-Covid future, businesses across the globe can create 395 million jobs and $10.1 trillion in business opportunities through "nature-positive' solutions by 2030, says the World Economic Forum (WEF). 

A new study from the World Economic Forum found that, as governments and businesses look to stimulate growth, businesses can tap into a $10.1 trillion opportunity, focusing on industry actions that add value to nature. 

"We can address the looming bio-diversity crisis and reset the economy in a way that creates and protects millions of jobs," said Akanksha Khatri, head of the Nature Action Agenda, WEF.

"Public calls are getting louder for businesses and government to do better. We can protect our food supplies, make better use of our infrastructure and tap into new energy sources by transitioning to nature-positive solutions," Khatri said.

The 'Future of Nature and Business Report' is built on real-world examples where business outcomes have been improved by nature-positive outcomes. British multinational automaker Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) collected and reused around 300,000 tonnes of aluminum between 2013 and 2019.

It translated into a 30 per cent recovery of the 180,000 tonnes of aluminium (JLR) used annually in the six-year period. The initiative has resulted in an overall drop of 46 per cent of carbon emissions in JLR's global vehicle production operations.

"The global economy is inextricably linked to the health of our planet," the report says. "How we produce, manufacture, consume and ultimately manage our waste is straining nature's ability to cope."

"What we eat and grow makes up around $10 trillion of global GDP and employs up to 40 per cent of the global workforce. Nature-positive solutions can create 191 million new jobs and $3.6 trillion of additional revenue or cost savings by 2030," said the report.

When it comes to mining and power generation, the authors said that nature-positive business could generate an estimated $3.5 trillion worth of annual value and create 87 million jobs by 2030. 

"Accounting for an estimated 23 per cent of global GDP and 16 per cent of employment, the extraction, production, manufacturing and generation of energy and materials is both a major contributor to global economic growth and a major threat to biodiversity," the report reads.

The WEF adds that the sector's negative effects - air pollution and carbon emissions - account for $9 trillion annually, or around 10.5 per cent of global GDP.

Reversing the costly impact, the report asserts, involves improving consumption efficiency to reduce the amount of resources that need to be extracted. It also involves improving how those resources are extracted to minimize their impact on ecosystems while shifting to more renewable energy.

"Supportive regulations - such as those that encourage and support environmentally sound extractives project design, systematic rehabilitation of mining sites, and waste collection and reuse - will be significant in unlocking the value of nature-positive businesses."


Issac John

Editorial Director of Khaleej Times, is a well-connected Indian journalist and an economic and financial commentator. He has been in the UAE's mainstream journalism for 35 years, including 23 years with Khaleej Times. A post-graduate in English and graduate in economics, he has won over two dozen awards. Acclaimed for his authentic and insightful analysis of global and regional businesses and economic trends, he is respected for his astute understanding of the local business scene.

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