Tradable permits and intergovernmental fiscal transfers play an increasing role in both biodiversity conservation and climate mitigation. In comparison to regulatory and planning approaches these economic instruments offer a more flexible and cost-effective approach to biodiversity conservation. Economic instruments should act as complements to rather than substitutes for conventional land-use planning, given that their applicability is limited by the heterogeneity of biodiversity. Linking biodiversity policies with carbon mitigation policies may provide synergies and alleviate the chronic inadequacy of conservation budgets. Since the scope and scale of the two policy fields differ in some respects, it must be ensured that market-based climate mitigation policies will be implemented with the restrictions necessary for safeguarding Earth's biological diversity.