Area of Permanent Preservation (APP) – As defined in Law # 12,651/2012, APP is a protected area, whether covered or not by native vegetation, having the environmental function of preserving water resources, the landscape, geological stability and biodiversity, facilitate the gene flow of fauna and flora, protect the soil, and ensure the well-being of human populations.

Business as usual – The way business usually is done, without innovation or changes.

Circular Economy – A regenerative and restorative economy by design, according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. It is an alternative to the ‘take, make and dispose’ economic model, which is reaching its physical limits. It is a continuous, positive development cycle that preserves and enhances natural capital, optimizes resource yields and minimizes systemic risks by managing finite stocks and renewable flows. It aims to keep products, components and materials at their highest utility and value at all times.

Cradle to Cradle – One of the approaches of the Circular Economy, developed by the German Chemist Michael Braungart, along with the American architect Bill McDonough. That concept, which resulted in the Cradle to Cradle certification, removes the concept of waste (‘waste equals food’), maximizes the use of renewable energies, manages the use of water, and adopts social responsibility practices.

Earth Overshoot Day – It is the moment when humanity’s annual demand on nature exceeds what Earth ecosystems can regenerate over the entire year. In 2018, the day we were in ‘overdraft’ was August 1st.

Ecosystem – A dynamic complex of plants, animals, microorganisms and their non-living environment interacting as a functional unit. Examples of non-living environments are: the mineral part of the soil, relief, rains, temperature, rivers and lakes – regardless of the species living there.

Ecosystem Services: Direct or indirect ecosystem contributions for human well-being.

Externalities – Negative or positive impacts of certain activities that affect those who little contributed to generate them, or did not contribute at all. In case of negative externalities, the losses caused to society are not paid by those who triggered them, but rather by everybody.

Global Platform on Business and Biodiversity – In the Global Platform on Business and Biodiversity there is a variety of data on business engagement activities, as well as information and tools for companies that want to better understand their impacts and dependencies in biodiversity and the functions of ecosystem services.

Guides and Tools – Paths that help incorporate natural capital into business management.

Insetting – The term refers to business initiatives to balance their relationships with the environment they depend upon. The idea consists of internally making up for negative social and environmental impacts associated with the business (climate, water, biodiversity, soil, social issues…). The core of the program is to incorporate social and environmental themes into the business strategy and, for that purpose, it is necessary to:

– Ensure participation of supply chains

– Control the environmental footprint

– Preserve resources and the core business

– Reinforce the group values and employee empowerment

– Add value to the product

– Engage consumers and partners

 Leaching – When natural vegetation is removed, the soil is exposed to the sun, wind and rain. Leaching is the process of washing out superficial soil minerals caused by rains, which leads to erosions, loss of fertility and silting of bodies of water (accrual of sediments on the river bed).

Legal Reserve – According to the New Forest Code, it is an area located inside a rural property or possession, apart from permanent preservation areas, needed for sustainable use of natural resources, conservation and recovery of ecologic processes, biodiversity conservation, refuge and protection to native fauna and flora. The percentage property area that shall be set aside as Legal Reserve varies according to the corresponding biome and region. That percentage is:

  • 80% in rural properties located at the Legal Amazon forest area
  • 35% in properties located in cerrado (savanna) areas at the Legal Amazon, out of which at least 20% shall be in the property itself and 15% in the form of environmental offset in another area, although in the same microbasin
  • 20% in properties located at forest areas, other forms of native vegetation in other regions of the country
  • 20% in properties located in areas of fields in general, anywhere throughout the country

Natural Capital – It can be defined as ‘stock or reserve provided by (biotic or abiotic) nature, which yields a valuable flow of natural goods or services into the future’, according to an article published by Daly and Farley. Ecosystems are an example of ‘stock’, whereas ecosystem services are an example of ‘flow’.

Natural Capital Coalition – The organization created the Natural Capital Protocol, a guide to help the business sector assess natural capital.

New York Declaration on Forests – A voluntary international declaration aimed at deterring global deforestation. It was firstly endorsed during the U.N. Climate Summit, in September 2014. It has 191 signatory nations, out of which 40 are governments, 20 are subnational governments, 57 are multinational companies, 16 are groups representing indigenous communities, and 58 are non-governmental organizations. Get to know its 10 goals.

Payment for Environmental Services (PES): A remuneration system in which the agent that promotes the environmental benefit is rewarded, and the beneficiary shall pay the corresponding economic value.

SDG – The Sustainable Development Goals are a global agenda adopted during the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, held in September 2015, consisting of 17 goals and 169 targets to be achieved by 2030.

The 17 SDGs are as follows:

  • Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms, everywhere
  • Goal 2. Zero hunger, achieve food security, improve nutrition, and foster sustainable farming
  • Goal 3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
  • Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education, and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
  • Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
  • Goal 6. Ensure access to and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
  • Goal 7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
  • Goal 8. Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
  • Goal 9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation
  • Goal 10. Reduce inequality within and among countries
  • Goal 11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
  • Goal 12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
  • Goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
  • Goal 14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources
  • Goal 15. Protect, recover and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, and halt biodiversity loss
  • Goal 16. Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all, and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
  • Goal 17. Strengthen implementation methods and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development

Soy Certification – The most popular systems are Round Table on Responsible Soy (RTRS), Biomass Biofuel, Sustainability Voluntary Scheme (2BS) and International Sustainability & Carbon Certification (ISCC).

Spurious Competitiveness – A concept created by the Chilean economist Fernando Fajnzylber, from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). Spurious competitiveness relies on low wages, subsidies and devalued exchange rates, as opposed to authentic competitiveness.

TEEB – The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity, an initiative headed by economist Pavan Sukhdev, who published the document entitled The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity, in 2011. The work emphasizes the potential nature benefits can provide to ensure and improve human well-being. You can access the version in English.

TeSE – FGVces Trends in Ecosystem Services (TeSE) business initiative, jointly built with a group of member companies guidelines for monetary and non-monetary valuation of 10 material ecosystems to the companies. You can see the guidelines and the tool in the following link: http://www.tendenciasemse.com.br/metodos?locale=pt-br

Waves – It is a global partnership led by the World Bank to incorporate natural capital into public accounts. You can read about the role of the private sector in acknowledging the value of natural capital to the business here: https://www.wavespartnership.org/en/private-sector-role-recognizing-value-natural-capital-focus

Hints on Videos, Research and Readings


  • Would you like to know the most effective way to protect natural capital? It is through Conservation Units, according to the organizers of the book Quanto vale o verde: a importância econômica das unidades de conservação brasileiras (‘How much are green areas worth: the economic importance of Brazilian conservation units’), by Carlos Eduardo Frickmann Young and Rodrigo Medeiros. The publication seeks to show that direct and indirect economic gains obtained from conservation units in the country largely exceed expenditures and investments required by the National System of Conservation Units (SNUC – Sistema Nacional de Unidades de Conservação).

You can access the book here.


  • Cultural Services – The video ‘The Value of Conservation Units to the Brazilian Society’ illustrates the contributions offered by the conservation units to the Brazilian society. It is about the value of nature and ecosystem services (water, climate balance, research, medicinal products, scenic beauty, etc.) for the well-being, the productive sector, the economy (a seven-fold return when compared to the value invested), defense of traditional populations, etc. The video was produced by ICMbio (Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation), the Ministry of the Environment (MMA), the German Technical Cooperation Agency (GIZ), and TEEB Regional-Local and Snuc Consolidation projects. Please visit:
  • Video: Ecosystem services – a new frontier for business competitiveness and resilience

  • A video prepared by the UEBT (Union for Ethical BioTrade) on the Biodiversity Barometer, showing the viewpoints of consumers from different countries about biodiversity. With subtitles in Brazilian Portuguese: https://youtu.be/lHQv-PLjWig
  • Documentary videos entitled ‘Negócios e uso sustentável da biodiversidade no Brasil’ (Business and Sustainable Use of Biodiversity in Brazil) cover the relationship between companies and biodiversity, showing best practices in biodiversity, innovation and relationship with suppliers in five companies: Beraca (cupuaçu – Theobroma grandiflorum), Centroflora (jaborandi – Pilocarpus microphyllus), Pele Nova (rubber tree – Hevea brasiliensis), Tobasa (babassu – Orbignya phalerata) and Natural Wax (carnauba – Copernicia prunifera). The videos were produced under the TEEB R-L project.






Websites and Platforms

  • Valuation of Ecosystem Services – To get to know different use cases of economic valuation as an instrument to make ecosystem services tangible for business activities.
  • Natural Capital Protocol, a standardized and comprehensive framework for companies to measure and assess their dependencies and impacts on natural capital.
  • ValuES Platform – Methods to incorporate ecosystem services into politics, planning and practice.


  • Financial risk management. Source: UNEP FI CEO Briefing (2010): Demystifying Materiality – Hardwiring biodiversity and ecosystem services into finance.

Academic Literature

  • COSTANZA, R.; DE GROOT, R.; SUTTON, P.; VAN DER PLOEG, S.; ANDERSON, S.; KUBISZEWSKI, I.; FARBER, S.; TURNER, K. Changes in the global values of ecosystem services. Global Environmental Change, v. 26, pp. 152-158, 2014.
  • HARDIN, G. Tragedy of Commons. Science, n. 162, pp. 1243-1248, 1968: https://www.sciencemag.org/site/feature/misc/webfeat/sotp/pdfs/162-3859-1243.pdf


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