Nature related disclosures are an important step on the path to help build an economy that works with, rather than against, nature.

At the start of Climate Week NYC, the Taskforce on Nature related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) announced the release of its recommendations for companies to assess and disclose their impacts and dependencies on nature

More than 150 companies worldwide already plan to make disclosures aligned with these recommendations by 2025, according to a survey conducted by the TNFD.

Liam Walsh, lead of Climateworks Centre’s Food, Land and Ocean team, welcomed the TNFD announcement. 

‘Disclosures provide a strong foundation for companies to demonstrate the progress they are making to deliver on a nature-related strategy and move to a mindset of nature restoration,’ Liam said. 

‘Companies that go through the process of assessing and disclosing their nature-related impacts and dependencies will develop an understanding of the steps they must take to reduce their impacts or restore and regenerate nature.

‘There is clearly more that will need to be done to fulfil the TNFDs aim of supporting a shift in global financial flows away from nature-negative outcomes and towards nature-positive ones, however, the TNFD can have a catalytic effect.’

Australia can become global leader

It is vital land managers, investors, governments and businesses are equipped with fit-for-purpose, scientifically credible data – information essential for quality TNFD reporting.

Fortunately, Australia is primed to become a global leader.

‘In Australia, there is a significant network of actors that is establishing scientifically credible metrics, methods and data that provide robust and objective measurement of the condition of nature,’ Liam said.

With support from the Macdoch Foundation, Climateworks Centre has developed version 1.0 of the comprehensive, open-source Natural Capital Measurement Catalogue that helps users to measure natural capital, listing evidence-based metrics and methods. 

The catalogue is the result of four years of work, informed by panel of experts from research institutions across Australia and an advisory group with representatives from more than 40 organisations across consultancies, financial institutions, government, land management, measurement providers, research and supply chains.

Closely aligned with what is outlined in the TNFD, the catalogue provides an entry point for companies and organisations in Australia that are trying to understand and navigate the framework.

‘The catalogue draws on a number of important international frameworks, including the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures,’ Liam said. 

‘As we know measuring nature is complex but the catalogue can help simplify the task by bringing together publicly available metrics and methods for measuring natural capital in a single online open resource. The metrics outlined in the Catalogue are consistent with those used by the TNFD.’

Nature is critical to achieving net zero while limiting warming to 1.5°C

Both the private sector and governments have come to understand that nature has an important role in supporting the transition to net zero.

This is why nature is critical in our work at Climateworks Centre. We recognise that there is no net zero without nature and that limiting warming to 1.5 degrees will require both a reduction in emissions and the protection and restoration of ecosystems.

‘It’s essential that we have a critical mass of businesses adopting ambitious corporate policies and frameworks,’ Liam said. 

‘Companies in Australia should feel confident that we are well-positioned to play a key role in forthcoming international state of nature reporting standards and global goals, including under the TNFD.’

More on natural capital: