Ceres’ Valuing Water Finance Taskforce and the World Bank’s 2030 Water Resource Group, among others, are acting together to address water as a systemic risk to business, people, and biodiversity. In September of 2020, 26 financial institutions signed the Finance for Biodiversity Pledge, calling on world leaders to address issues like freshwater habitats, biodiversity, and ecosystem services as one interlinked issue.
Long comprehended by scientific and indigenous communities, the relationship between freshwater, biodiversity, and the crucial life-giving ‘services’ which nature provides is beginning to be addressed systemically by the financial sector. Global financial institutions are beginning to treat these issues as one interconnected systemic problem and are working collaboratively to first understand where their investments are impacting the system, then how they can change it.
This signals a change in mindset from investing in ecosystem services or watershed restoration discretely, to a holistic and collaborative approach which first understands where current investments are supporting unsustainable practices, then moves to collectively address key intervention points.