Natural Solutions at Global Business of Biodiversity

Kingfisher diving © Iana55 Dreamstime

From kingfishers and slime mould to architecture and telecommunications, the wealth of biodiversity, or variety of species on earth, continues to provide the raw materials and inspiration for new technology.  Biodiversity pervades all aspects of our lives, much of the time without us realising.


As part of the International Year of Biodiversity, JNCC established the Natural Solutions feature on the JNCC website. The concepts introduced through the website were echoed in the first Global Business of Biodiversity Symposium held in London in July.  The aim of the symposium was to raise the profile of biodiversity and show how biodiversity, ecosystems and the commercial and industrial sectors are inextricably linked. Yet again the links between the health of our environment and the health of our economies are becoming clearer. 


The symposium also saw the launch of The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) for Business by Pavan Sukhdev. The aim of TEEB is to evaluate the cost of the loss of biodiversity and the associated decline in ecosystem services worldwide, and to compare this with the cost of effective conservation and sustainable use.  The intent of the study is to sharpen awareness of the value of biodiversity and ecosystem services and facilitate the development of effective policy, as well as engaging business and citizen responses. The TEEB for Business has since indicated that new markets for biodiversity and ecosystem services could be worth US$480bn by 2020.


Natural Solutions, JNCC’s bi-monthly update, highlights how biodiversity is providing technical solutions and shaping our world. Featuring the five topic areas of health, energy, materials and design, transport and communications, and food, the latest case study focuses on flight and how birds, seeds and flies have all contributed to the development of air travel.  Swifts have taught us about efficient flight, dragonflies about manoeuvrability and flexible wings, and seeds about gliding. In this way, biodiversity has contributed to the massive global air market.  In 2007, the global air freight sector facilitating worldwide trade had a value of US$93.6 billion and this is predicted to rise to US$129.1 billion by 2012. 2009 saw 4.8 billion air passengers[1].

Natural Solutions will continue to update through December 2010.  Look out for future stories on alternative crops, butterfly wings inspire digital display, and more.



Contact File


Amanda Gregory

Sustainability Advice Officer

Tel: +44 (0) 1733 866811

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