Fig. 1: The biosphere in the hands of a few. | Nature Ecology & Evolution

Fig. 1: The biosphere in the hands of a few.

From: Transnational corporations and the challenge of biosphere stewardship

Fig. 1

Transnational corporations have become a major force shaping the world’s ocean, atmosphere and terrestrial biomes. Based on available data, the figure illustrates estimated levels of concentration for industries shaping the biosphere. Concentration is measured as, for example, proportion of profits or sales, market share, exports, production, trade volumes or access to resource reserves. We use these measures, rather than a consistent economic percentage of sector dominance, to illustrate the disproportionate capacity of TNCs to influence large-scale material flows and processes. The consolidation described here is assumed to be associated with an ability to influence standards, practice and norms in the respective industry in relation to the capacity to shape the biosphere. See Tables 1 and 2 for details on each estimate, source material and a synthesis of industry-related environmental impacts.

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