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Although many governments, financial institutions, and corporations are embracing nature-based solutions as part of their sustainability and net-zero carbon strategies, some nations, Indigenous peoples, local community groups, and grassroots organizations have rejected this term. This pushback is fueled by (i) critical uncertainties about when, where, how, and for whom nature-based solutions are effective and (ii) controversies surrounding their misuse in greenwashing, violations of human rights, and threats to biodiversity. To clarify how the scientific community can help address these issues, I provide an overview of recent research on the benefits and limits of nature-based solutions, including how they compare with technological approaches, and highlight critical areas for future research.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





1410 - 1416


Biodiversity, Climate Change, Human Rights, Humans, Indigenous Peoples, Organizations, Sustainable Development