This week the TNFD launched the ‘Nature-related Data Catalyst’ with the goal of encouraging the accelerated development and collaboration across commercial and public data organisations.

The goal is to bring together a range of actors from across the nature-related data landscape to identify shortcomings in current nature-related data and analytics, and recommend ways to accelerate the development of, and access to, nature-related data, analytics and tools. The overall aim is to improve the ease, speed, and scale of adoption of the TNFD framework, once the Taskforce launches their final recommendations in September 2023.

The Catalyst responds to the data challenges and gaps identified in the TNFD’s Data Landscape Discussion Paper released in March 2022 as part of the v0.1 beta release of the TNFD Framework, this includes a scan of existing and new data provider; publicly funded, NGO and commercial organisations

Using data to assess your company or investment dependency and impact natural resources is not new - and whilst there is an explosion of new spatial data providers, enabled by new low orbit satellite, airborne, ocean and terrestrial measurement technologies, there are still significant data gaps. In addition, the relatively low level of automation means nature-based assessment using data is a relatively manual and slow task. As we saw with Google partnering with WRI (World Resources Institute) the arrival of Dynamic World is another sign that data companies should collaborate, not compete, to help the financial world address nature-related risks and re-direct investment to nature positive outcomes.

I believe the landscape can change quickly as more standard approaches are developed and data providers work in partnership together. This is where the TNFD working with data providers through the Data Catalyst can help

Further information on the data catalyst including how to apply is included here

“In the same way that data drives the operation and valuation of financial assets and markets, data will play a leading role in ensuring our natural assets are assigned the economic and social value they are contributing to human kind”