Nov 22, 2017 to Nov 23, 2017

2nd Forum on Natural Capital Accounting for Better Policy

Nov 22, 2017 to Nov 23, 2017
The Hague, The Netherlands


Photo: Josef.stuefer/FlickrCC


The 2nd Forum on Natural Capital Accounting for Better Policy (NCA Policy Forum) will build on the 1st NCA Policy Forum and the experiences since then, which have been compiled in a comprehensive stock-taking publication: Forum on Natural Capital Accounting for Better Policy Decisions: Taking Stock and Moving Forward.

While the 1st NCA Policy Forum was about what NCA can do for better decisions, drawing on shared experience (Read more about it here), the 2nd will be about what NCA could and should do for better decisions, drawing on participants to generate new understanding and co-create focused guidance. More details can be found in this Background Document.

Contributions to the 2nd Policy Forum:

AGENDA (available here and below)

Day 1: Wednesday 22 November

8.30 am


Tea and coffee

9.00 am - 10.30 am

Session 1. Welcome and opening

Sessions leads: Steve Bass and Sofia Ahlroth; Facilitator: Steve Bass


This session will cover introductions, aims and “house rules” of the Forum. There will be a formal welcome, a recap of last year’s forum, and an introduction to this year’s. This will be followed by a ‘newsy’ country panel discussion highlighting progress in relation to the principles and recommendations coming out of the first forum. An “ice-breaker” will be followed by tea.

9.00 am

Welcome from MFA

On behalf of the Forum collaborators: MFA, WAVES and UNSD/DESA

  • Carola van Rijnsoever, Director, Inclusive Green Growth Department, Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs

9.20 am

Recap from last year and aims of this year’s forum

Objectives, outcomes, house rules

  • Steve Bass, Senior Associate, IIED, UK (presentation)
  • Salvador Sanchez-Colon, Project Director “Natural Capital Accounting and Valuation of Ecosystem Services” - Mexico, UNSD

9.30 am


Building NCA into World Bank processes – An expansion of the WAVES program

  • Raffaello Cervigni, Lead Economist, World Bank (presentation)

9.40 am


  • Work programme
  • SEEA and the SDGs
  • Gerard Eding, Director National Accounts, Statistics Netherlands - on behalf of UN Committee of Experts in Environmental-Economic Accounting (presentation)

9.50 am

News panel

Countries reflect on:

  • Looking back: Examples where NCA (or another type of NC information) has successfully improved a policy, investment or other decision
  • Looking forward: What are the major opportunities to improve decisions? What is the most strategic policy or investment decision upcoming in your country which most needs NCA, and could be targeted?
  • Peter Katanisa, Advisor, Ministry of Natural Resources, Rwanda
  • Beth Brunoro, First Assistant Secretary, Dept. Environment and Energy Australia
  • Kelapile Ndobano, Deputy Secretary of Macroeconomic Policy, Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Botswana
  • Rosanna Ovalle Vengoechea, Director, Sustainable Environmental Development, Department of National Planning, Colombia (TBC)

10.20 am

Welcome “Icebreaker”

Getting to know our evolving community and its aspirations

  • Steve Bass, Senior Associate, IIED, UK
  • Salvador Sanchez-Colon, Project Director, Mexico, UNSD

10.30 am

Morning tea


11.00 am - 12.30 pm

Session 2. NCA and the SDGs - Overview

Session leads: Arjan Ruijs and Bram Edens; Facilitator: Salvador Sanchez-Colon


This session will provide an overview of the SDGs and how NCA can help decision makers examine synergies and trade-offs within the SDGs, the institutional arrangements needed to achieve the SDGs, as well as monitoring the SDGs with NCA. It will be a combination of presentations, an expert panel, and table discussions.

11.00 am

Monitoring SDGs with NC


11.15 am

Decision-making with NCA for synergies and trade-off

  • Arjan Ruijs, Senior Researcher, PBL, Netherlands (presentation)


11.30 am

Panel discussion

  • Henry Vargas Campos, Central Bank, Costa Rica
  • Pak Medrilzam, Indonesia
  • Marisol Rivera, DG Planning, SEMARNAT, Mexico (TBC)
  • Salman Hussain, TEEB Coordinator, UNEP

12 noon

Table discussions and report back


12.30 pm



1.30 pm - 3.00 pm

Session 3. NCA and the SDGs Goals – The role of business

Session leads: Hannah Pitts, Omer van Renterghem and Elizabeth White; Facilitator: Hannah Pitts

1.30 pm

Introduction and welcome

  • Introduction to the Natural Capital Protocol
  • Context: How businesses have been using natural capital, high-level summary of synergies/differences with NCA
  • Hannah Pitts, Relationships Director, NCC, UK

1.45 pm

Case studies from business

  • Rwanda - tea
  • Indonesia - coffee
  • UK - urban accounting
  • Questions

2.15 pm

Reflections on the case studies in light of the SDGs

  • Carl Obst, Director, IDEEA, Australia


2.25 pm

Roundtable discussion

  • How might we increase linkages between business and policy? Are the SDGs the right vessel to do this?


2.55 pm

Summary and close


3.00 pm

Afternoon tea


3.30 pm - 5.00 pm

Session 4. NCA for SDGs – Exploring poverty reduction and green growth

Session lead and facilitator: Steve Bass


This session will be a workshop where the audience splits up into two groups to explore how NCA can be applied to deal with poverty or with green growth. Poverty reduction is SDG 1, while green growth cuts across several SDGs including SDG 8 - Decent work and economic growth; and SDG 12 - Responsible consumption and production.   

3.30 pm

Session outline and questions for groups

  • Addressing the use of NCA for poverty reduction or green growth
  • Steve Bass, Senior Associate, IIED, UK




3.40 pm

Briefing 1: 5-minute introductory orientation on current green growth approaches from UNEP

Briefing 2: 5-minute orientation on poverty reduction from World Bank

Briefing 3: 5-minute real-world policy decisions for Zambia relating to green growth and poverty

  • Salman Hussain, Coordinator UN TEEB (presentation)
  • Raffaello Cervigni, Chief economist Africa, World Bank (presentation)
  • Richard Lungu, Principal Planner, Ministry of Development Planning, Zambia (presentation)

3.55 pm

Breakout groups

  • Split into two groups: (1) poverty and NCA and (2) green growth and NCA (5 mins)
  • Group discussion (40 mins)
  • Report back from both groups (5 mins each)


4.50 pm

Room discussion based on the report back



Summary of the day

  • Steve Bass, Senior Associate, IIED, UK
  • Salvador Sanchez-Colon, Project Director Mexico, UNSD

5.15pm to 7.00 pm

Cocktail function


Day 2: Thursday 23 November 2017

8.30 am


Tea and coffee

9.00 am - 10.30 am

Session 5. NCA for SDG15 - Life on land

Session leads: Bram Edens and Rocky Harris; facilitator: Salvador Sanchez-Colon


This session will examine how NCA can be applied to the management of terrestrial ecosystems, including the sustainable use of forests, biodiversity loss, and land degradation.

9.00 am

Introduction to the session


9.10 am

Country experiences (10 mins each)

  • UK - Forest Policy
  • Australia - Revealing trade-offs in timber, water and biodiversity
  • South Africa – TBC
  • Uganda - Using NCA for Aichi and NBSAP Targets



10.00 am

Table discussion

  • Questions to answer from list

Theme-based discussions (e.g. biodiversity, forestry)

10.30 am

Morning tea


11:00 am-12.30 pm

Session 6. NCA for government processes

Session leads: Arjan Ruijs, Sofia Ahlroth, and Michael Vardon; Facilitator: Michael Vardon


This session will look at how NCA can be applied to government processes and policy tools (such as budgeting and taxation), and how NCA can be used in models to assess the impact of particular policy options. (presentation)

11.00 am

Botswana – Importance of water and NCA for sustainable development

  • Presentation (10 mins)
  • Questions (5 mins)




11.15 am

Indonesia – National Development Planning and NCA

  • Presentation (10 mins)
  • Questions (5 mins)




11.30 am

Rwanda – NCA as input to the mid-term National Strategy, 2018 to 2023

  • Presentation (10 mins)
  • Questions (5 mins)




11.45 am

Australia – Developing strategy and action plan for environmental economic accounting

  • Presentation (10 mins)
  • Questions (5 mins)
  • Sarah-Jane Hindmarsh, Director, Environmental-Economic Accounting, DoEE, Australia (presentation)



12 noon

Table discussions and report back


12.30 pm



1.30 pm - 2.30 pm

Session 7. NCA for assessing trade-offs

Session lead: Sofia Ahlroth; Facilitator: Juan Pablo Castaneda (presentation)


This session will look at how economic modeling can be of help to consider synergies and trade-offs and assess the multiple effects of government policies.

1.30 pm

Accounting and modeling complex trade-offs

  • Presentation
  • Onil Banerjee, Natural Resource Economist, IAB (presentation: part 1 and part 2)


1.50 pm

Country experience

  • Costa Rica - The impact of tax exemptions on electric vehicles: an application of the IEEM platform 
  • Irene Alvarado-Quesada, Central Bank, Costa Rica (presentation)



2.00 pm

Questions and discussion


2.30 pm -4.30 pm

Session 8. The way forward

Session leads: Arjan Ruijs and Sofia Ahlroth; Facilitators: Steve Bass and Salvador Sanchez-Colon


This session will examine how we can continue working together, building on the living principles and the community of practice, and identifying processes for collaboration and development of guidance materials.

2.30 pm

Building NCA into World Bank processes – An expansion of the WAVES program

  • Discussion/feedback




2.50 pm

UNSD – reflections on way forward

  • Bram Edens, UNSD

3.00 pm

Afternoon tea


3.30 pm – 4.30 pm

Session 8, continued. Toward forum recommendations

3.30 pm

SDGs and NCA

Research and collaboration on NCA for SDGs uses

  • Bram Edens and Sofia Ahlroth

3.35 pm

Linking business and country accounting

  • Hannah Pitts

3.40 pm

Development of guidance material

  • Michael Vardon

3.45 pm

Communications on NCA for SDGs

  • Rosalind Goodrich

3.50 pm

Table discussions

  • Research
  • Business roles
  • Guidance materials
  • Communications


4.20 pm

Tables report back


4.30 pm - 5.00 pm

Session 9. Summary and close

Session leads: Steve Bass and Omer van Renterghem


This session will draw together the main threads of the forum, synthesizing key messages and identifying the ways that participants may contribute to the strengthening of linkages between NCA and the achievement of the SDGs

4.30 pm

Summary of key messages

  • Steve Bass
  • Salvador Sanchez-Colon

4.45 pm

Closing remarks

  • Sofia Ahlroth
  • Bram Edens
  • Omer van Renterghem

5.00 pm

Close of forum