The voluntary carbon market is booming, investments in ecosystem restoration are rising, and biodiversity credits are coming. Businesses and investors want to finance nature, that one thing is certain.
But it is difficult to find good projects to finance. Projects that are transparent, investment-ready, and with a strong focus on biodiversity and local people’s wellbeing.
Responding to this issue, the explorer.land project stage at the NOAH Conference Zurich gathered more than 35 truly impactful and socially-just restoration and conservation initiatives. The stage was a place for them to share their story, define and communicate funding needs, and connect with impact investors, responsible businesses, and other sustainability actors.
For the first time ever, a networking event with leading startups and investors featured a carefully curated climate & biodiversity project portfolio. Only projects with meaningful and verifiable climate, biodiversity, and social impacts participated.
And it was remarkable to see how this gathering materialized and evolved before, during, and after the event in Zurich!
It was never about projects pitching competitively for the mighty dollar. It was about coming together to create a synergistic, regenerative ecosystem of initiatives that help advance the Sustainable Development Goals. It was about co-creating a portfolio of transparent, multi-benefit initiatives that speak as a collective to potential funders and partners.
It was about co-creating a portfolio of transparent, multi-benefit initiatives that speak as a collective to potential funders and partners.
Yes, all these initiatives need funding to scale and achieve impact. Yes, most of them presented what could easily be considered a pitch for this much-needed funding. But they also fostered partnerships between themselves and with technology partners. They shared knowledge and lessons learned. And they voiced a common message: capital needs to engage with the realities on the ground and it needs to create and support local social and environmental value.
Capital needs to engage with the realities on the ground and it needs to create and support local social and environmental value.
The event in Zurich concluded but this is not over. We will continue to nurture this ecosystem together and collectively work towards raising part of the $700 billion a year in extra funding needed for averting ecological collapse. A virtual, multi-stakeholder event will be announced soon to start co-creating the infrastructure for supporting this ecosystem… so stay tuned!