Agora Natura: Developing an online marketplace for more nature
Many of nature’s goods and services provide the basis for our well-being. Clean air and water or being able to take a walk amidst trees and greenery are just a few examples of many. We are not always aware of these ecosystem services - they are not adequately taken into consideration when private, corporate, or political decisions are made. Instead, we continue to use up more and more of nature’s resources, increasingly jeopardising its service capability. Those willing to pick up the tab on the care and provision of these services are few and far between. We would like to change that.
Environmental Action Germany (Deutsche Umwelthilfe) is part of a team of scientists, environmentalists, and conservationists, that currently developing an online marketplace for ecosystem services and biodiversity. Starting in 2018, it will be accessible for everyone: those committed to creating more ecosystem services and biodiversity on their land or owned property, including agriculturists, nature conservation associations, and municipalities, as well as businesses and private individuals looking to financially support these goals directly in areas that are important to them.
We do not want to privatise nature, nor do we want to relieve the government of its obligations. We want to create an instrument without bureaucratic hassles that picks up where previous conservation efforts have fallen by the wayside.
To achieve this, we are currently researching:
- Under which circumstances businesses and private individuals are willing to invest in the conservation of ecosystems,
- which measures for the provision of ecosystem services are advisable,
- which methods and procedures are suitable to measure the services provided,
- how an online marketplace for nature’s services can be designed to be both attractive and functional,
- how we can disseminate our ideas to build a broad base of supporters,
- how we can make the marketplace sustainable.
The “AgoraNatura” project is supported by the joint funding initiative “Research for the Implementation of the National Biodiversity Strategy” by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety.