Arctic Freshwater Natural Capital in the Nordic Countries is a flagship project for the Finnish Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers. The project is an evaluation of the socio-economic benefits of the use and management of surface waters in the Nordic countries. The project applies institutional analysis, water accounting, ecosystem accounting, input-output modelling and general equilibrium modelling to address the contribution of freshwater capital to human welfare and the cost of degradation of the water ecosystems and the services they provide to humans. The results can be used at local, regional and national scale to guide smart decisions on different environmental policies or economic investments. Moreover, the results contribute to the EU Biodiversity Strategy Target 2 Action 5 that calls for mapping and assessment of the state and economic value of ecosystems and their services and recognition of their economic worth in accounting systems.

The proposed session would serve as the final seminar of the project. It will include a keynote, presentations of the project results including a commentary from invited speakers, and a structured panel discussion. The panel discussion would be based on knowledge gaps and emerging issues identified in the draft project report that will be shared with the panelists in advance. The outcomes of the session would be reported as part of the project’s final report including a separate summary for policy makers.

The session aims to provide a place for scientists, decision makers and final users to have dialog across sectors to create better understanding about the possibilities, needs and challenges concerning freshwater capital and accounting. The session will not be inviting papers outside the project.