Farm productivity, profitability and resilience were in focus at the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) 2015 Outlook Conference today in Canberra.
Sasha Courville, NAB’s Head of Corporate Responsibility Strategy, outlined NAB’s Natural Value strategy in a session on investing in natural capital in agribusiness.
Ms Courville said that Australian farmers recognise more than anyone that a healthy environment and a healthy business go hand in hand.
“As the issue of resource scarcity becomes more apparent, businesses are recognising the need to better manage and account for natural capital.
“Many case studies from around the world illustrate that farmers and businesses that understand and invest in their natural capital assets reap benefits including improved security of supply, profitability and increased business resilience,” she said.
Natural Value is NAB’s term around how we start to value and recognise the contribution of nature to us and our economy, including water, good soil and minimising run-off .
The inclusion of Natural Value is part of NAB’s journey towards understanding natural capital risks and opportunities, and integrating natural capital considerations into our day-to-day decision making processes and risk assessments.
A recent survey of over 5,000 farming customers found that 74 per cent had made changes to their businesses as a result of natural resource sustainability in the past two to three years.