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Half of global GDP depends on biodiversity: Swiss Re

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Just over half of global GDP, equal to $US41.7 trillion ($59.1 trillion), is dependent on high-functioning biodiversity and ecosystem services such as pollination and climate regulation, the Swiss Re Institute’s new Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Index reveals.

The index gives stakeholders a new tool to manage the operational, transitional, and reputational risks connected to biodiversity and ecosystem decline.

“In recent times, we have noticed an increasing interest among our clients in the topic as all stakeholders start to understand how biodiversity and ecosystem decline affects asset values and the economy in general,” Group CEO Christian Mumenthaler says.

“Biodiversity and ecosystems underpin all economic activity in our societies globally and should be part of strategy discussions across financial services.”

The report comes ahead of a United Nations Summit on Wednesday which is set to call for “urgent action on biodiversity for sustainable development”.

Biodiversity measures the number, variety, and variability of living organisms.

Australia ranked as the second most fragile biodiversity among G20 economies and eighth of all countries, with a 34% fragile ecosystem share. Water scarcity is a driver, alongside coastal protection and pollination.