This step helps you measure the biodiversity dependencies and impacts of your business.

Once you have identified the biodiversity dependencies, impact drivers and / or impacts of your business across its value chain, it is important to ask yourself about their scale or extent. Some impact drivers may generate more biodiversity impacts than others. For instance, the impact of property development on biodiversity will vary across regions, depending on a number of factors such as whether threatened species or habitats are present in the target area. This is what the measurement process is about i.e. assessing how much biodiversity is being used or impacted on. We define measurement as the process of determining the amount, extent and condition of biodiversity components.

You may undertake a biodiversity dependency and / or impact assessment for a product, service and / or your company. For the purpose of measuring biodiversity dependencies and impacts of your business, we have adopted these value chain boundaries:

  • Upstream (cradle-to-gate): This includes the activities of your business’ suppliers;
  • Direct operations (gate-to-gate): This covers the activities over which your business has control, including equity-based, financial, and operational control;
  • Downstream (gate-to-grave): This covers activities linked to the purchase, use, re-use, recovery, recycling, and final disposal of your business’ products and services.

So as to be able to measure the biodiversity dependencies and impacts of your business, we invite you to consult the forthcoming guidance document for this third step of our biodiversity mainstreaming guidelines. This should help you:

  • Understand the basic concepts underpinning the measurement of biodiversity dependencies and impacts, including the selection and use of appropriate indicators;
  • Frame, plan for, and undertake an appropriate biodiversity dependency and / or impact assessment, depending on your focus (e.g. project, product or organisational assessment) amongst other factors.

Furthermore, we are preparing for the development of a Biological Diversity Protocol (BD Protocol). The BD Protocol aims to be a standardised methodology to help business measure and report on its net biodiversity impacts.

Framing the biodiversity risks and opportunities of your business.

You may build your business case for biodiversity by identifying the biodiversity risks and opportunities specific to your company. These may be framed from various complementary perspectives, such as:
– The reliance of the activities of your business on biodiversity and its services, directly and / or through its supply chains;
– The bottom-line implications of biodiversity-related revenues, expenses, assets and / or liabilities;
– The relevant laws and regulations applicable to your business and its stakeholders;
– The interests and concerns of your stakeholders (e.g. impact of reputational risks on sales, loss of social license to operate), including clients / customers, local communities, business partners, governmental and non-governmental organisations.

Download the new report “Invitation to join the Biodiversity Disclosure Project – A study of the biodiversity performance of South African companies”.

Undertake a self assesment of your biodiversity perfomance.

Many businesses are already on the biodiversity mainstreaming journey. Here is a selection of case studies from various industries.