A banker by training, Pavan Sukhdev runs the numbers on greening up -- showing that green economies are an effective engine for creating jobs and creating wealth.
In 2008, Pavan Sukhdev took a sabbatical from Deutsche Bank, where he'd worked for fifteen years, to write up two massive and convincing reports on the green economy. For UNEP, his "Green Economy Report" synthesized years of research to show, with real numbers, that environmentally sound development is not a bar to growth but rather a new engine for growing wealth and creating employment in the face of persistent poverty. The groundbreaking TEEB (formally “The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity”) report counts the global economic benefits of biodiversity. It encourages countries to develop and publish "Natural capital accounts" tracking the value of plants, animal, water and other "natural wealth" alongside traditional financial measures -- in the hope of changing how decisions are made to take into account damage or preservation of biodiversity.
Sukhdev is the current McCluskey Fellow at Yale University where he leads the TEEB@YALE graduate seminar. Sukhdev chairs the Global Agenda Council on Biodiversity and Ecosystems for the World Economic Forum, and was the Special Advisor and Head of UNEP’s Green Economy Initiative.He says: "You cannot manage what you do not measure."
“A billion people depend on fish for their main source for animal protein. At the rate at which we are losing fish, it is a human problem of enormous dimensions, a health problem of a kind we haven’t seen before.”
“At the species level, it’s been estimated that insect-based pollination, bees pollinating fruit and so on, is worth something like $190 billion. That’s something like 8 percent of the total agricultural output globally. … But when did a bee actually ever give you an invoice?”
“We are not only risking the extinction of the entire coral species, the warm water corals, we’re not only risking a fourth of all fish species which are in the oceans, but we are risking the very lives and livelihoods of more than 500 million people who live in the developing world in poor countries.”
“We were losing natural capital — the benefits that flow from nature to us … at an extraordinary rate, of the order of two to four trillion dollars-worth of natural capital.”
“When did a bee actually ever give you an invoice?”— on the value of bee pollination
“When we measure corporate performances, we don’t include our impacts on nature and what our business costs society. That has to stop.”