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UNEP launches new directory on the impact of financing sustainable land use

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GENEVA (Metro Rail News): Financial institutions around the world can now measure the positive impact of their investments in the biodiversity conversation, adaptation, mitigation, forest protection and sustainable livelihoods using a new directory of indicators and a resource platform, launched today.

The Land Use Finance Impact Hub and its repository of positive impact indicators – launched on 6 April by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Climate Finance Unit and the World Conservation Monitoring Center UNEP Nature (UNEP-WCMC) – have been developed with and for impact funds and sustainability-focused financial institutions, and aims to support the deployment of effective industry frameworks to track the environmental and social impacts of investments in nature. land use.

To successfully address the triple planetary crisis of climate change, nature loss and pollution, leaders are calling on the world to become not only net zero, but also nature positive, for the benefit of people and society. the planet. This represents a real paradigm shift with the economic imperative not only to minimize impacts but also to restore ecosystems. Banks and investors are realizing this urgent need and are looking for advice and practical solutions to foster investments in nature-friendly land use. The new tool will enable the implementation of policy efforts across the financial sector and encourage capital flows to nature-friendly assets and activities.

Robust impact measurement frameworks are key to building public and private investor confidence, attracting diverse sources of concessional finance, and integrating private capital into biodiversity conservation, climate adaptation, climate change mitigation , forest protection and sustainable livelihoods. They align with the global focus on nature-based solutions, based on the resolution recently adopted at the 5and United Nations Environment Assembly.

“Following the release of the Task Force on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) beta framework, the new Land Use Finance Impact Hub provides an important resource for financial institutions to ensure they are properly considering their environmental and social impacts. The Positive Impact Indicators Directory is a valuable and unique starting point for institutes to track their positive impacts – and aligns with TNFD’s call for greater disclosure on identifying and disclosing related opportunities. to nature,” said Matt Jones, Nature Economics Officer at UNEP-WCMC.

The Positive Impact Indicators Directory is a harmonized shortlist of key performance indicators, designed to encompass fundamental aspects of investing in sustainable land use, such as the area of ​​natural habitat that is effectively protected over time. It aims to help end users, including impact funds, asset managers and debt managers, identify and measure how land use investments generate positive environmental and social impacts. UN Member States that participate in blended concessional finance will also find this useful to ensure that their impacts are properly tracked. The directory also allows users to see how proposed indicators relate to global goals, including the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, Rio Conventions and the United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, enabling financial institutions to track their positive environmental and social impacts at a time of increasing pressure on the financial sector to influence the change needed to address global crises.

“In the early days of sustainable land use finance, each fund tended to develop its own set of project-specific key performance indicators, which made it difficult to aggregate impact results at the fund level and for financiers to identify where they could best invest their capital to achieve the desired impacts, said Ivo Mulder, Head of UNEP’s Climate Finance Unit. land use is a first step to solving this problem by adopting a common and standardized approach It brings increased efficiency for the allocation of capital in nature-friendly assets, including in the context of sustainable land use assets. lands.

The Directory, while providing a unique and focused shortlist of positive environmental and social impact indicators, is only a small part of the Land Use Finance Impact Hub.

The Hub will host multiple expert discussions, briefing notes that educate decision-makers on various environmental and social frameworks, and relevant external resources. The team is also looking to expand the repertoire of positive impact indicators to include indicators relevant to banks, in addition to the current set developed with and for impact funds.

UNEP’s climate finance unit, UNEP-WCMC, aims to make the Impact Hub the go-to platform for the guidance and tools users need to ensure funds are spent effectively, potential risks are reduced and impacts are measured, monitored and reported.

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