Biodiversity Offsets

Effective Design and Implementation

image of Biodiversity Offsets

This report examines the key design and implementation features that need to be considered to ensure that biodiversity offset programmes are environmentally effective, economically efficient, and distributionally equitable. Biodiversity offsets are being increasingly used in a wide range of sectors as a mechanism to help compensate for the adverse effects caused by development projects in a variety of ecosystems. In this report, insights and lessons learned are drawn from more than 40 case studies from around the world, with an additional 3 in-depth country case studies from the United States, Germany and Mexico.



Biodiversity loss is one of the major environmental challenges facing humankind today. Despite the invaluable benefits provided by biodiversity and associated ecosystems, current and projected trends show continued decline. It is widely acknowledged that concerted policy efforts will be needed to reverse these trends. The aim of this volume is to provide policy makers and practitioners with good practice insights on how to effectively design and implement one particular instrument that has recently been gaining traction from governments and business alike, namely biodiversity offsets. Typically undertaken as the last step in the mitigation hierarchy (i.e. avoid, minimise and then offset loss), successful biodiversity offset programmes are those that are environmentally effective, economically efficient and distributionally equitable.


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