The Soapbox: opinion-based articles and discussions

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What (or why) do we need to value?

Building upon the foundations of the TEEB from theory to policy and practice, TEEB for Oceans and Coasts has the chance to offer a critical and unique opportunity to carefully identify and bring to life the ways in which ecosystem thinking and values can change the incentives and policies that, to date, have resulted in the steady decline and loss of value of these economic engines for the planet.

TEEB for Oceans and Coasts proposes to: 
  1. Identify policies that would benefit from better information on the economic, social and cultural value of ocean ecosystems and biodiversity
  2. Observe and map the societal, cultural and biophysical value landscape that links us to the oceans, identifying the underlying drivers for change; 
  3. Connect stakeholders to the existing knowledge on oceans, demonstrating the global economic and environmental challenges, and exploring potentials for another frame of economic thought
  4. Develop concept designs and prototype a variety of possible solutions and evolutionary ecosystem-based economic frames
  5. Develop a research strategy that better leverages current knowledge, fills high priority gaps and enables improvement of knowledge over time
  6. Ensure the implementation of solutions and policy options is acted upon as part of a common effort and action by all stakeholders.
TEEB for Oceans and Coasts is looking for real world examples in order to show decision makers at all levels and civil society stakeholders how new policies, practices, markets and agreements could improve the ecological and economic productivity and sustainability of marine ecosystems around the world. 
Where do you think TEEB for Oceans and Coasts should focus? What’s the right balance between policy application, new tools, and more valuation studies? 
Author bio: 
Yannick Beaudoin is Head of the Marine Division for GRID-Arendal, A United Nations/United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) collaborating center in Norway. His current project work activities include the development of a global TEEB for Oceans and Coasts study, the management of the UNEP Global Outlook on Methane Gas Hydrates and co-coordination of the SPC-SOPAC – UNEP Pacific Marine Minerals and Deep Sea Mining Assessment. He received his PhD in Marine/Economic Geology in 2006 from the University of Toronto and is currently completing a Masters in social-ecological economics at Schumacher College/University of Plymouth in the UK.


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