The global economy has grown and changed significantly in recent decades. Although many measures of development such as income and life expectancy have improved, the benefits of global economic growth have been uneven. There has been a drastic rise in social inequality and environmental degradation — a direct result of the pursuit of unsustainable management of the Earth’s natural wealth.
IUCN wants to see a rapid transition to a green economy, one that recognises the fundamental dependence of human well-being on nature and the critical benefits and services it provides. Healthy ecosystems such as forests, wetlands and river basins play a major role in supporting local livelihoods as well as providing investment opportunities.
It is time for countries to act collectively to reform the economy so that it supports efforts to eliminate poverty, protect biodiversity and ecosystem services, and promotes sustainable development. IUCN calls for a re-examination of our economic indicators to identify those which can better reflect the status of human well-being. It also wants to see the full value of biodiversity and ecosystem services reflected in national accounts, private sector reporting, and decision making.