Sara Standish

Sustainable Business & Biodiversity

Just a short posting for those of you interested on what is being done to scale up biodiversity friendly businesses.? This was sent me to me by Mareike Hussels my colleague?at WRI’s New Ventures program, a business accellerator for sustainable business.? She attended an event?in Brazil on biodiversity and enterprise creation and?was particularly impressed by the caliber of the participants at the event.? Mareike thought that the meeting could represent the start of a renewed interest in SMEs that offer biodiversity-related services.? Check it out to see if you agree.

Earlier this month, New Ventures collaborated with the Brazilian Foundation for Sustainable Development (FBDS) in organizing a side event at the COP8 of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Curitiba, Brazil. The event, held on March 23rd-24th, focused on the role of the private sector in the conservation of biological diversity.

Luiz Ros, WRI’s Head of Markets and Enterprise, opened the seminar with a call for increased efforts to create the markets and opportunities that allow the private sector to contribute to biodiversity conservation at a larger scale. Throughout the two days a number of speakers from the New Ventures network presented business or financial initiatives that contribute to biodiversity conservation.

One such company, Linax produces linalol that is an ingredient found in 70% of costmetic and perfume products such as Chanel No. 5. Linax’s linalol is produced from Brazilian basil, which a substitute for the endangered Amazonian wood-rose. Global consumption of linalol is estimates at 6,000 tons annually, and consumption in Brazil is estimated at 100 tons annually.

New Ventures? portfolio of companies includes over 30 companies from biodiversity friendly sectors, such as certified wood and non-timber forest products, organic agriculture and food products made of sustainably harvested native species.