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Monsanto commits to carbon neutrality

Published by , Digital Assistant Editor
World Fertilizer,

Monsanto has announced the formation and first meeting of the Carbon-Neutral Collaborative, a consortium of experts on agricultural greenhouse gases. The Collaborative will help develop a framework for agricultural GHG accounting and advise Monsanto on its commitment to become carbon neutral by 2021. Monsanto announced its goal of a carbon neutral operational footprint one year ago.

“Since last year, we’ve been energised and inspired by the productive discussions and efforts around climate change from the many stakeholders involved, especially our farmer customers who are the ultimate stewards of the land,” said Brett Begemann, Monsanto’s President and COO. “While the problem of climate change is incredibly complex with many regional differences, the contributions over the past year—by some of the strongest leaders in agricultural and environmental science—are very promising.”

For example, the US Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service recently awarded a US$1 million Conservation Innovation Grant to the National Corn Growers Association, to support work in this area. This grant was matched with $1.6 million from Monsanto and in-kind contributions by several other partners in the project.

The USDA-supported project and the Carbon-Neutral Collaborative have been tasked with developing a scalable and verifiable carbon accounting framework that will provide a transparent system for measuring and reporting carbon reductions based on the adoption of specific agricultural practices and systems. In addition to Monsanto, inaugural members of the Collaborative include experts from:

  • AgSolver Inc.
  • Applied GeoSolutions
  • Climate Smart Group Inc.
  • Coalition on Ag Greenhouse Gases.
  • Colorado State University.
  • CropGrower LLC.
  • Kansas State University.
  • National Corn Growers Association.
  • The Soil Health Partnership.
  • University of Illinois at Chicago.

The formation of the Collaborative is just one example from the past year of the cooperative work across the agriculture industry that lays the groundwork for large scale carbon-neutral crop production to fight climate change.

Monsanto has also started reducing GHG intensity in the company’s crop protection operations, including:

  • Further streamlined the crop protection supply chain to curb emissions in production and transit.
  • Established an internal carbon price, which was recently used to evaluate the climate impact of Monsanto’s capital investment in converting a coal boiler to natural gas in 2017, expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 42 000 tpy.
  • Added a sustainability index for selecting contract growers for seed corn production.

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