By Franz Rentel, Country Director South Africa
It has been exactly two years since we launched AgriCarbon in March 2021 in what has been an intense and exhilarating ride. We started this journey to harness the power of nature to remove carbon from the atmosphere by rewarding farmers to build healthy soils and thereby produce the most scientifically rigorous agricultural carbon credits possible. This presents an exciting opportunity for farmers to lead the way in tackling the enormous challenge climate change presents while at the same time accessing a new revenue stream.
During the past two years we have had to adapt, grow and overcome real adversity while slowly but surely building on our incremental wins. Were it not for the continuous faith and support of our farmers, partners and investors, we would be nowhere near to where we are today: +150,000 hectares and +100 farmers enrolled into the programme, with our first carbon payments to farmers expected later this year.
The issuance of nearly 185,000 high quality soil carbon credits in a few months will likely be the first of its kind to be issued by the Verra Carbon Standard, the biggest carbon certifier globally. This “new harvest” of soil credits is unique:
- The scientific rigor that underpins them,
- The independent validation & verification achieved,
- The quality standards and the integrity behind the process.
Climate change is the biggest challenge humanity faces today. The science around climate change is clear. The recently released IPCC 6th assessment report highlights that we need to improve agricultural practices and also that carbon removals are essential to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees.
But there are solutions here and now. Soil is one of the largest carbon sinks we have. By adopting sustainable agricultural practices, combined with cutting edge science and technology, farmers can play an essential role in capturing and storing carbon in healthy soils.
Our vision for AgriCarbon is to continue to push the boundaries for quality and integrity, which earns the trust of farmers and trust of the credit buyers within the carbon markets. This means going above and beyond the requirements of the Verra methodologies that ensure the essential components such as additionality, permanence, and risks and uncertainty determination. This will be supported by the highest scientific rigor, and a robust soil sampling and measurement protocol.
Going into the future we’ll be focusing on adding more farmers to our AgriCarbon community and providing additional value-add services, such as deeper insights into farming practises vs carbon yields, farm mapping, carbon footprinting, and other products and services. Another exciting development is that AgriCarbon is spreading across the globe: our journey has already begun in several countries in South America, and we have our sights firmly set on expanding into Africa.
We are excited for the journey that lies ahead. Join us as we unite in the vision that agriculture can offer an immediate, scalable and affordable solution to the climate crisis.
Click the links to read this Quarter’s newsletter stories:
- AgriCarbon first sign-up window submitted for registration with Verra
- Sale of AgriCarbon’s first tranche of soil carbon credits
- AgriCarbon enrolment window 2 expands carbon farming into new frontiers
- Regenerative Agriculture: benefits and challenges
- Aligning theory and practice: CNG team gets the lowdown on soil carbon
- The Hidden World of Soil
- Agri Tech Conference with Siviwe Malongweni CNG’s Research Specialist: Agriculture & Soil Carbon
- Landbouweekblad 2023 Conferences with AgriCarbon Agronomist, Dr. Stephano Haarhoff