OBC launches survey on biodiversity certificate claims to drive corporate demand

Published 11:42 on June 20, 2024  /  Last updated at 11:42 on June 20, 2024  / Giada Ferraglioni /  Biodiversity, International

The Organisation for Biodiversity Certificates (OBC) has launched a survey to gather views on the claims that companies can make when buying biodiversity credits, as the organisation expects more clarity will have a significant impact on corporate demand.

The Organisation for Biodiversity Certificates (OBC) has launched a survey to gather views on the claims that companies can make when buying biodiversity credits, as the organisation expects more clarity will have a significant impact on corporate demand.

The initiative, co-organised with advisory firm EY, will be open for comments until Aug. 2, and the results will be presented during the COP16 UN biodiversity summit in Cali, Colombia later this year.

OBC and EY expect to receive comments from at least 50 companies worldwide.

Fabiola Flex, president of OBC and co-founding partner with nature project developer Adryada, told Carbon Pulse the survey is part of a broader effort by the organisation to define a roadmap for companies to reach the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF) targets.

“Since companies are not NGOs, it is crucial to identify what kind of claims will incentivise them to contribute to reaching the 30×30 conservation target,” Flex said.

According to Flex, the claims that companies can make after purchasing units are among the main concerns for corporate boards when it comes to investing in biodiversity.

“Companies are afraid of greenwashing and, if claims are not well defined, they will be reluctant to engage in the market.”

Alongside the ideal claims, the initiative also seeks to investigate the companies’s biodiversity goals and drivers associated with the use and purchase of biodiversity credits, though OBC prefers to refer to credits as “certificates“.

Quentin Guibert, consultant for nature and biodiversity at EY, told Carbon Pulse that European companies have a key role in helping achieve the 20% restoration targets set out by the newly approved Nature Restoration Law.

“The law has been designed for the public sector, and companies are not involved in the discussion,” he said. “But I believe that, without the private sector, countries will not be able to reach the targets.”

Moreover, according to Guibert, since EU companies will soon be required to carry out nature-related disclosure under the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), the survey aims to understand how they intend to make those claims within the framework.

OBC was founded in 2022 by Adryada and sustainable company Le Printemps des Terres, in collaboration with the Museum National d’Histoire Naturelle (MNHN) and Paris-based consultancy Carbone 4.

It aims to establish measures and market regulations for biodiversity uplift credits and enable mixed carbon-biodiversity projects to emerge.

Currently, OBC is piloting its methodology on several initiatives around the world, including one developed by French Peruvian project developer Fronterra in the Amazon rainforest, and is planning to launch new initiatives in Colombia.

By Giada Ferraglioni – giada@carbon-pulse.com

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