This study report under the coordination of Conservation International (CI-Brazil), recommends that companies should understand and incorporate into their decision making process, the economic value of biodiversity and ecosystems services as well as of their environmental impacts, in order to pursue more sustainable ways of doing business.
Environmental, or ‘natural capital’, valuation could also be more widely used by governments to design polices to achieve sustainable development.
The study compared the environmental value of different agricultural practices for producing palm oil and soybean. The assessment is based on pilot studies carried out by cosmetics company Natura Cosmeticos S.A. and agricultural products firm Monsanto on plantations in Brazil.
Understanding natural capital dependencies is no longer enough for business. It is also necessary that companies value and quantify their impacts on biodiversity and the ecosystems in order to manage risks and embrace new business opportunities. Economic valuation tools, in particular, can assist in this process as they translate to the dominant language of economics and politics, the value of the natural capital.
Using this approach, the TEEB for Business Brazil Project aimed at highlighting the environmental value of agricultural practices of two companies: Natura and Monsanto, in order to demonstrate the environmental and economic benefits generated by more sustainable business practices.
In this report we present the lessons learned from the first application of TEEB in Brazil and the results of these case studies. Thus, by highlighting the outcomes of this project, we hope to promote a greater awareness of the Brazilian corporate sector and serve as a stimulus for other Brazilian companies to consider biodiversity and ecosystem services as a strategic factor for their business.