A regional ecosystem accounting program "COPERNICEA" in support of biological diversity in Africa


The International Day for Biological Diversity was announced by the United Nations General Assembly on May 22, the adoption date of the text of the Convention on Biological Diversity. This year, the topic chosen to celebrate this day "Our solutions lie in nature" emphasizes hope, solidarity and the need to work together at all levels to build a future and a life in harmony with nature.

It is because we depend entirely on healthy and dynamic ecosystems that the valuation of ecosystems and the sustainable management of natural capital are a core part of the OSS interventions in its area of action. Approved since 2018, as an observer member of the Convention on Biological Diversity, the OSS very early invested in the promotion of ecosystem natural capital accounting (ENCA), in its area of action, which allows, through the study of changes in ecosystems and the impact of investments, to assess the economic cost of the ecological restorations that would be necessary.

As far as the OSS is concerned, the International Day for Biological Diversity concurs with the start of a regional program which aims to support, in an initial phase, six French-speaking countries in West and North Africa (Burkina Faso, Guinea-Conakry, Morocco, Niger, Senegal and Tunisia) to set up environmental accounts according to the ENCA (ecosystem natural capital accounting) method for the implementation of the SDGs. The COPERNICEA program “Regional cooperation for new indicators of ecosystem accounting of natural capital in Africa”, funded by the French Development Agency (AFD) and implemented by the OSS, is mainly based on the sustainability of the system within national statistical and thematic bodies of the six countries and will be replicable in the region.

In the long term, countries will see their choices of agricultural, infrastructural or tourist investments clarified thanks to the skills acquired in terms of ecosystem, biophysical and socioeconomic accounting, of their natural capital.