The NatureBacked Podcast

Beyond COP15: Much Needed Solutions for Biodiversity

December 21, 2022 Single.Earth Season 2 Episode 18
The NatureBacked Podcast
Beyond COP15: Much Needed Solutions for Biodiversity
Show Notes Chapter Markers

United Nations’ biodiversity summit COP15 finished with a historic deal earlier this week in Montreal. At NatureBacked, we discussed the essence of the agreement and how protecting biodiversity will become common.

Nations agreed to protect 30% of the planet by 2030 and to protect vital ecosystems such as rainforests and wetlands and the rights of indigenous peoples. The Montreal summit was seen as a last chance for nature’s biodiversity.

“We have this global agreement that this is the thing - biodiversity needs to be protected. And action needs to be taken on this,” Merit Valdsalu, chief executive and co-founder of Estonian greentech startup Single.Earth, said in the podcast.

“As a startup founder, it is now, I think, the craziest time where we can say that the United Nations just validated our utopian startup idea,” she said.

Single.Earth is building a nature-backed currency of the future, minted from nature’s work in keeping our planet livable.

The Montreal agreement can change the world for the better, said Katherine von Stackelberg, a scientist working at Harvard and Single.Earth.

“Everyone agrees we want to be nature positive. Make disclosures mandatory piece; everyone’s moving in the right direction. But again, the devil is in the details,” said von Stackelberg.

“There’s still this idea: we’re going to get nature into the economic system instead of thinking, how can we make the economic system more like nature? Because that’s not that difficult. If you’re going to be successful, you have to commit to something like a nature-backed currency. Nature is the only asset that has any value fundamentally and from which all else comes.”

Von Stackelberg and Valdsalu said Single.Earth has the solution ready for turning the UN’s biodiversity targets into tangible actions.

“The crazy utopian idea that we had - we have this, it’s working, we are creating a new currency based on nature; we have the first tokens dispersed, many tokens minted, it’s there, it can be used. It’s no longer about whether we are going to become nature-positive or net zero by 2030. We can do that today,” Valdsalu said.

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(Cont.) Beyond COP15: Much Needed Solutions for Biodiversity