Faun butterfly rain forest gbohne/Flickr

The Price of Biodiversity

According to three new studies, preserving biodiversity is not just a desirable goal; it also makes good financial sense, at least for some projects. World leaders, in choosing the targets that will guide the global development agenda for the next 15 years, should take note.

DHAKA – We humans do not only share the planet with a range of other species, including plants, animals, and even microbes; we also depend on them for our survival. Can we determine the economic value of protecting the natural world?

Some people will balk at the idea of putting a price tag on biodiversity, viewing its protection as an obvious imperative. But they would undoubtedly also agree that preventing human death and suffering, while providing food, water, and an education to all, is vital.

The reality is that there are simply not enough resources to do everything. Hard choices have to be made. Fortunately, economics can help us determine how to do the most good with the resources we have.

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