But too often, conservationists dismiss earnest efforts to engage more people in acknowledging nature’s value.
I work for The Natural Capital Project, an organization that seeks to help people value how much we depend on nature and then factor this information into decisions about the use of natural resources.
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It’s a beautiful idea, but it’s also vague — and intuition is wobbly ground on which to base business and public land-use decisions.
Using science and data, in addition to personal values, to justify decisions is part of a fair, transparent democratic process.If you could also back up those claims with numbers — pounds of fish, say, or higher incomes, you’d be much more likely to win her over.And your facts might also help developers, fishing communities, tourism operators and all citizens find common ground.For specific questions related to visuals, please contact Todd Reubold. Have you ever paid more to buy something labeled “organic” because you thought it was the right thing to do for nature?Looked for a “recycled” or Forest Stewardship Council label on a paper product? If so, you know what it’s like to express your appreciation and support for nature in monetary terms.Nor does it suggest that benefits to humans are the only benefits that matter.It simply makes it possible to bring them into conversations from which they too often are absent.Please send an email to [email protected] a link to the republished story on your site once posted.Images and other visuals are not included in this license.By revealing and communicating the specifics of what nature is doing for us, we hope to make it easier for nature to become a primary consideration in all decisions. Natural capital assessments occasionally involve monetary valuation.In some cases, valuing benefits from nature in monetary terms can help us connect to people outside the conservation choir, but natural capital assessments are more typically about showing relative values and unveiling hidden trade-offs. Many people still think of them as swamplands that should be drained for development.