Beyond short-term profit: businesses call for a strong Nature Restoration Law

Posted on April, 19 2023

Over 35 European businesses signed a statement, published early this week, in support of a strong EU Nature Restoration Law with legally-binding targets. It is one more powerful plea in a recent series of growing industry calls to restore natural habitats in the EU and save human livelihoods and economic activities from the dire consequences of advancing nature loss and climate crisis.
In the statement, businesses call for “the urgent adoption of an ambitious and legally-binding EU Nature Restoration Law to bring nature back to Europe. The EU Nature Restoration Law will be a key tool to tackle our climate and biodiversity crises and to guarantee the long-term sustainability and viability of our society and economy.” 

The future of the first EU-wide law to restore nature is currently at stake as it faces strong opposition from conservative decision-makers and anti-nature lobby groups. However, a growing number of more progressive businesses recognise the threats posed by ever-growing biodiversity decline coupled with climate change impacts and voice their support for large-scale nature restoration. These companies look beyond short-term profit and understand that without taking action now, their future economic activities are endangered by supply chain disruptions or reduced access to crucial ecosystem services. In fact, over half of the global GDP, $44 trillion, is potentially threatened by nature loss.

Sabien Leemans, Senior Biodiversity Policy Officer, WWF European Policy Office, said: “Progressive businesses join a long list of stakeholders calling for a strong Nature Restoration Law, including citizens, NGOs, the scientific community and other business networks. The Members of the European Parliament and EU Member States must listen to these calls and deliver legislation that Europe desperately needs, fit for tackling both nature and climate crises. Despite shameful attempts of presenting nature restoration as the enemy of farmers, fishers or renewable energy development, this statement is a reminder that we all need resilient ecosystems for our economic activities, human health and the planet.” 

Sofie Ruysschaert, Nature Restoration Policy Officer, BirdLife Europe, added: “The increase of floods, droughts, and rising temperatures across Europe and globally are already shaking the business world with unforeseen, and often unmanageable, disruptions from operations to supply chains. With business models depending on long-term food, water and energy security, companies know that the protection and restoration of nature bring huge benefits, including the creation of jobs and new markets. Every part of society has something to gain from an ambitious Nature Restoration Law. We call on decision-makers to listen to these forward-thinking voices and timely deliver the law to restore nature.”

Following the letters of business networks and organisations representing the European Power Sector to support an EU Nature Restoration Law, now over 35 companies operating in diverse sectors from renewable energy to fishing and outdoor industry demand effective action to tackle biodiversity and climate crises and safeguard the future of our society and the economy. 

An ambitious EU Nature Restoration Law with legally-binding targets will ensure the continuity of critical ecosystem services and contribute to climate change mitigation, prevention and reduction of natural disasters, improved water quality, cleaner air, healthier soils and the improvement of people’s overall well-being. 

Read more and see the full list of the signatories in the business statement.
Wetland restoration in Persin Island, Bulgaria.
© BirdLife.