Biodiversity, “just” an environmental subject? More and more companies are taking up the subject of biodiversity and their impact on it. Some even include this theme in their CSR policy. Because yes, biodiversity and businesses are interdependent. They are in an ecosystem relationship where economics, resources and negative externalities all play an important role. Leading companies in the field of CSR are therefore looking for the best strategies to limit their impact on biodiversity. In some cases, they even seek to make it positive. The strategies to be adopted vary according to the company, its context and various other factors.
If you are wondering about your company’s impact on biodiversity, there are many great resources available for free online. This article also tells you some ways to better understand this subject and take action. It is ultimately not as complex as it may seem.
Biodiversity and business, an essential interdependence
Regardless of the activity of the company, it uses biodiversity to obtain supplies, to regulate itself, to benefit from cultural services or even relies on it to be able to be active. We can for example think here of the water cycle, of thermal and climatic regulation, of photosynthesis, of education, of various and varied factors. You have understood it: companies are dependent on biodiversity, even if it was not obvious to them at first sight.
Conversely, all companies produce waste and exploit certain natural resources. In many cases, we even speak of overexploitation. No matter what activity your business is in, you are bound to use certain resources. Water, electricity, food, … Obviously, depending on the exact activity of the company, the quantity of waste discharged and the exploitation of resources can vary greatly. The type of waste produced is not always the same. A factory, for example, will have a much stronger impact on water or air. A company active in consulting will need to travel more (electricity, oil, etc.). The issues are different.
In both cases, the strategy to improve its impact on biodiversity and on the environment will differ greatly. This is why there is no single action plan concerning the impact of companies on biodiversity!
How can I reduce my company’s impact on biodiversity?
It is important to act now when it comes to biodiversity. Did you know that we estimate that more than a million species are threatened today ? So, to act quickly and consistently, three steps are essential:
- Establish a biodiversity diagnosis. First and foremost, you need to know where your business stands in terms of biodiversity impacts. This first diagnosis makes it possible to identify the main issues related to biodiversity.
- Put in place a strategy and an action plan. Once you are aware of your company’s positioning in relation to biodiversity, fully integrate this dimension into your CSR strategy. This allows you to implement actions that make sense both for biodiversity and for your business. Because yes, we are talking here about a real opportunity for innovation! A good action plan also puts indicators in place. In the case of biodiversity, we speak of monitoring indicators, state indicators, pressure indicators and response indicators. If you have trouble getting your bearings, you can also consult standards. Two reference standards in terms of biodiversity are the Afnor NF NF X32-001 standard “Organizational biodiversity approach – Requirements and guidelines” and the “Science Based Target for nature” approach developed by the Science Based Target Network.
- Communicate on these actions internally and externally. A good communication strategy on your actions related to biodiversity allows you to mobilize and raise awareness among your teams but also to inspire other companies to follow you. You can then position yourself as a leader on the subject.
What are you waiting for to start setting up a project related to biodiversity? The sooner the better when it comes to corporate responsibility. You don’t have to be perfect: the important thing is to take the first step.
The theme of biodiversity and business may seem complex. However, it is a subject that can prove to be a tremendous lever for responsible action within companies. Innovation is no exception. To know how to recognize and exploit the commercial and innovative opportunities brought by better resource management, you must be able to integrate biodiversity issues into the overall strategy of your company and/or your work team. This exercise is not always easy to do, especially for those new to the subject.
Nicomak has been supporting companies for almost 15 years on all subjects related to biodiversity. The expertise of our consultants on the subject allows you to create an effective action plan to improve your company’s impact on biodiversity. Contact them today to discuss and explore the first lines of thought together!