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Ecological business footprint helps to show companies how to develop biodiversity

André van Amstel (Environmental Systems Analysis Group, Wageningen University, Netherlands)
How to determine and regulate the business impact on the quality and conditions of the surrounding countryside? How to measure the biodiversity, what is the value and how do local and global business leaders deal with this theme in real life?
 
The 4th meeting of the platform Business for Society called Ecological business footprint was held in Prague on 24th September 2014. Partners of the event were Embassy of the Netherlands in the Czech Republic, Český Rozhlas Plus, Enviweb, Cemex and souvisime.cz. Concrete examples were presented by Czech and worldwide sustainable business leaders.
 
Pedro Fenández, from the international mining company Cemex, showed to the fully occupied hall of the conference area Era Svět, that industrial companies do not need to damage nature, but they may even increase the diversity in the long term.
 
Professor André van Amstel from the Netherlands, introduced the cooperation of the academics with the corporates which helps business, and enhances everyday life in the protected area Utrechtse Heuvelrug. “Currently, we rarely cooperate with the economical value of nature,“ warns André van Amstel.
 
Karel Fronk, a colleague of Prof. Van Amstel, introduced the environmental strategy of Skanska in the Czech Republic which is applied while they are building large industrial or transport structures. The attitude of the investor and his knowledge about the diversity value plays a key role.
 
A strategic and long term approach is applied also by Veolia represented by Vendule Valentová, director of the endowment fund Veolia.
 
Jan Dušek from Beleco, had a speech about the worth of steps to sustainable diversity and mentioned the successful examples of the cooperation of the International Union for Conservation of Nature with corporates.
 
Eva Vaněčková and Pavla Kusová, from dm drogerie, introduced the project from their headquarters in České Budějovice focused on the change of the parking place to a garden full of life. „Plants create the natural life atmosphere during the whole year,“ described Kusová: „We believe that our employees prefer this surroundings and it helps their working results.“
 

InfoBox:

„The quality of life and business in a valuable nature location depends on the level of sincerity to protect the local biodiversity and landscape.“

André van Amstel, professor, Wageningen University, Netherlands

 

„Firstly we thought that the best restoration of industrial land is to build a new park or green paradise with a lot of trees.  These days, thanks to experts, we know there is much better ecological and economical solution available – not to plant other trees but let nature operate naturally.“

Pedro Fernández, Cemex

 

„There are so many environmentaly friendly buildings in the Czech Republic. Open Garden of the Partnership Foundation in Brno helps to increase biodiversity. It is a great example of the green and friendly construction with a strong emphasis on a building´s environment.“

Karel Fronk, Skanska

 

 
For more information and photos please visit this link (please note it is in Czech only) or contact Kateřina Kolská, kolska@byznysprospolecnost.cz
 
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