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Month: February 2024

Tackling debt, biodiversity loss, and climate change

Elizabeth C. Losos, Alexander Pfaff, and Stuart L. Pimm
Science volume 343 issue 6696 (2024) 10.1126/science. ado7418

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A “Task Force on Sustainability-Linked Sovereign Financing for Nature and Climate” will convene to establish a framework to ameliorate the debt, biodiversity, and climate crises by reforming debt-for-nature swaps, i.e., voluntary transactions in which creditors reduce or cancel debt in exchange for debtor-country commitments to fund specific environmental activities. We identify four reforms that should underpin the new framework: (i) Offer debt relief at a nationally consequential scale; (ii) defer to debtors on implementation to reduce transaction costs and raise debtors’ benefits; (iii) employ performance-linked instruments based on reliable metrics to ensure global gains; and (iv) integrate all of those metrics across biodiversity conservation, emissions reduction, and climate adaptation to allocate funds most efficiently.


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