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Eastern Himalayan Rural Futures®:
Ecology for the New Economy

Virtually bringing together 12 Eastern Himalayan Capitals and 10 Countries for
creating a Naturenomics™ Agenda – Ecology for the New Economy

Eastern Himalayan NaturenomicsTM Forum 2021

The wealth of our nature contributes more than US$125 trillion to the global economy every year. Environmental degradation will only be made history, when nature enters economic calculations and accounts for its role in the development models and human well- being. As the world gears up to set key climate goals at COP26 in Glasgow this year, countries and corporations are racing to institute new policies to limit carbon emissions and invest in sustainable business models and practices. This is an opportunity to take immediate actions to end the fossil fuel era and curtail habitats loss to boost resilience to the impacts of climate challenges.

The 9th Eastern Himalayan NaturenomicsTM Forum 2021 will drive conversations on Ecology is Economy and foster a critical debate on preserving this balance between conservation imperatives and human development through the creation of ecologically compliant assets, for ecology and economy in interdependence. Achieving this transition through natural capital, however, means a fundamental rethink of how we account for natural capital. We need new methods for valuing and amplifying natural capital – across our value & supply chains, and our economy.

Interdependence of Ecology & Economy: Valuing Nature

The journey towards Ecology is Economy is the most critical step we can take towards making nature, rural livelihoods, and our economy self-sustaining. We need a mindset shift: Ecology is no obstacle to the goal of development. Rather, it is the underpinning powerhouse of our economy—and unlike other finite resources, can be regenerated to sustain futures. 2020 has conclusively demonstrated, our interdependence with nature: economic, social and cultural. Around the world, governments and business leaders are slowly waking up to the fact that good ecology is good economy. But the move to adopt this principle has been a slow and uphill struggle – and the move to redesign economies and businesses for interdependence with nature has so far been inadequate to respond to the enormous scale of the challenges of our time.

The need for a holistic, multidimensional approach to action in the Eastern Himalayan region has never been more critical. The Eastern Himalayas retain 60% its forest cover today, but only 25% of the region’s original habitats survive today. Deforestation in the region is rampant. According to the 2019 Forest Survey of India, 74% of net deforestation in India occurred in the North East states. These shrinking forests have cascading effects on the regional landscape. On average, approximately 23% of the land in the region is desertified.

The future of the Eastern Himalayas today lies in recognizing ecology is economy