This press release was originally released on Europe.eu.


“On 1 November 2017 the Delegation of the European Union and Chinese authorities launched the new project “Natural Capital Accounting and Valuation of Ecosystem Services” in Beijing.

The EU and China’s economic prosperity are underpinned by their natural capital, i.e. its biodiversity, including ecosystems that provide essential goods and services, from fertile soil and multi-functional forests to productive land and seas, from good quality fresh water and clean air to pollination and climate regulation and protection against natural disasters.

This new three-year action will deepen bilateral collaboration on environmental policies. Its main objective is to mainstream natural capital accounting and valuation of ecosystem services in data driven decision and policy making, in order to influence policy-makers at national, regional and local level. It covers activities in five strategic partners of the EU (Brazil, India, China, South Africa, and Mexico) and the main counterpart in China is the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), under the authority of the State Council. The project is funded by the EU Partnership Instrument and implemented with the assistance of The United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), UN Environment and the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

The launch event featured high level speakers from NBS, UN and the EU and was followed by a stakeholder consultation meeting on 1-2 Nov to reach out to national and local authorities, corporate sector and other relevant stakeholders, and to identify how natural capital accounting could support sustainable development policy initiatives in China.

Additionally, a Regional Training Workshop on the System of Environmental Economic Accounting (SEEA) Experimental Ecosystem Accounting (EEA) will take place in Beijing from 6-8 November 2017. This workshop will enhance national capacities in implementing ecosystem accounting around four themes:  (i) explanation of the SEEA EEA ecosystem accounting framework, (ii) application of this methodology to integrated policy making, (iii) concepts and approaches of the valuation of ecosystem services used for ecosystem accounting purpose, (iv) thematic accounts for carbon and biodiversity. Senior technical level representation is expected from national statistic divisions from various countries: Brazil, Mexico, India, South Africa, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Fiji, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan, Singapore and South Korea.

Background: The EU is currently supporting a number of projects on Natural Capital Accounting, both in the EU and internationally.  All these activities provide input and testing opportunities for the development of the experimental standard System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA), in order to guide the further development of this experimental international standard.  The general common goal of all these initiatives is to mainstream the value of ecosystem services (monetary and non-monetary) in decision-making in the EU and its strategic partners, so that ecological and environmental aspects can be fully embedded into the economic decision making framework…”

Additional information: System of Environmental Economic Accounting – https://seea.un.org/

DG Environment: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/nature/capital_accounting/index_en.htm

Source: DG Environment.