There is a growing awareness among financial institutions that impacts and dependencies
on biodiversity play an important role, both from a risk and from an opportunity perspective.
Economic sectors invested in impact on biodiversity and depend on the ecosystem services
nature provides. These services are increasingly at risk as a result of the loss of biodiversity.
Through their investments, financial institutions can play an important role in the conservation
and sustainable use of biodiversity, contributing not only to the biodiversity targets of the
Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), but also to the reduction of investment risks. For
financial institutions to take up this role, the availability of science based, reliable data on the
impacts on biodiversity is an important precondition.
The Partnership for Biodiversity Accounting Financials (PBAF) is an independent foundation based in the Netherlands and a sister-initiative of PCAF (the Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials), which has now grown into a truly worldwide initiative. PCAF and PBAF are actively supported by the Dutch government, strengthening the initiative’s linkages to the international policy level (EC, CBD) and related initiatives in the financial sector. PBAF aligns and cooperates constantly with these initiatives in the financial sector like the European Align project, the Taskforce for Nature related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) and the Finance for Biodiversity Pledge.
PBAF's primary aim is to develop the ‘PBAF Standard’. The PBAF Standard enables financial institutions to assess and disclose impact and dependencies on biodiversity of loans and investments. PBAF provides practical guidance to financial institutions on biodiversity impact and dependency assessment and defines what is needed in order for these assessments (either or not conducted by data providers) to deliver the right information to financial institutions. With this information financial institutions can effectively manage and report on biodiversity related risks and opportunities and contribute to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.
The development of the Standard started in 2019 and is led and supported by a group of PBAF-partners and supporters, now totaling 30 financial institutions from 7 countries (February 2022).
To achieve this, PBAF defines biodiversity impact and dependency assessment best practice delivering the information and data financial institutions need to assess, interpret, and manage the biodiversity impacts and dependencies of their loans and investments. By defining impact and dependency assessment best practice, PBAF aims (1) to contribute to a standardized and transparent biodiversity impact and dependency assessment approach and (2) to support financial institutions in the assessment of biodiversity impacts and dependencies of their loans and investments. The biodiversity impact and dependency best practice will be relevant to financial institutions, tool developers and data providers alike.