As we make our last preparations for tonight’s ‘Forum on Natural Commons’ the World Forum on Natural Capital has also begun at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.
First Minister Alex Salmond will make the keynote speech at the conference, while corporations including RBS, Coca Cola, Rio Tinto and KPMG will be attempting to put a value on nature so that they can include it in their balance sheets.
Some corporations and governments, including the UK, claim that if the natural world is given a financial value it is more likely to be protected. But campaigners from the World Development Movement, Counter Balance, Re:Common and Carbon Trade Watch believe this is the first step to creating financial markets in water, air, soil and forests, effectively privatising nature.
In protest activists from the World Development Movement dressed as dodgy salesmen have been offering to sell Ben Nevis to the highest bidder outside the EICC (photos here). Loch Ness is also up for sale on eBay.
Members of our organisations have been inside the EICC today and you can follow their thoughts on Twitter at #notforsale. They will also be attending the Forum on Natural Commons tonight to share their reflections the other conference. Registration is now closed: for those who can’t attend in person we hope to provide a live stream of the evening.