September 22, 2022

Nature in an Era of Crises

This paper presents the findings of the Taskforce on Nature Markets’ initial landscaping phase. It maps key aspects of nature markets and includes a systematic economic quantification of nature markets globally, in USD. The paper also offers insights into legal frameworks and rights of nature as well as considerations for embedding equity in nature markets. In an era of multifaceted crises, the paper calls for robust governance of rapidly expanding nature markets to avoid greenwash, halt illegal markets and deliver nature positive and more equitable outcomes.

Nature in an Era of Crises


The Taskforce on Nature Markets has a mandate to ensure the global economy interfaces with nature in ways that deliver nature positive, equitable and net zero outcomes. This paper presents the learnings and findings of the Taskforce’s first phase of work, and points to deeper dives to be explored in the next phase.

The paper maps key aspects of nature markets, and includes, for the first time, a systematic economic quantification of nature markets globally, in USD - building on the definition and taxonomy outlined in the Taskforce’s White Paper ‘The Future of Nature Markets’.



  • Nature Markets in An Era of Crises
  • Taxonomy of Nature Markets
  • Insights: soft commodity markets
  • Insights: nature credit markets
  • Governance of Nature Markets 
  • Embedding equity in governance 
  • Legal rights of nature



• Today’s multi-faceted crises underpinned by historical global market inequalities and distortions, further fuelled by geopolitical change, economic transformation, and the effects of climate and change and nature’s decay.

• Nature Markets produce US$7.3 trillion worth of goods and services, equivalent to 8.6% of Global GDP

• Nature markets include large markets that are already important to the global economy, e.g. agricultural commodities, as well as emerging markets that reflect an increasing recognition of the value of nature, e.g. nature-based solutions for carbon sequestration.

• The largest nature markets are also the oldest: intrinsic markets, namely the trade in food-related commodities.

• Agricultural commodity markets are valued at about US$4 trillion annually. Trading in extractives should be added to this to gain a full picture of commodity nature markets, which bring the total to about US$7 trillion annually excluding oil and gas, and about US$10 trillion a year all in, or about 11% of global GDP.

• Nature credit markets remain a small but rapidly growing set of nature markets. Strong governance principles will be key to scaling these markets in ways that support equitable outcomes for all.

• Endowing legal rights on nature broadens the interpretation of what and how nature can be protected, introduces the possibility of trans-sovereign legal action, and empower citizens to protect nature’s rights.

Contact and more information

To send suggestions or comments to the authors, please email Monique Atouguia: 

For media and communications, please contact Ceandra Faria: