Company States Crops Can Be Grown To Mitigate Climate Change; Commits To Carbon Neutral Footprint Across Its Operations By 2021
ST. LOUIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--As agriculture and farmers around the world work to mitigate and adapt to the complex challenges posed by climate change, Monsanto Company today announced plans to make its operations carbon neutral by 2021 through a unique program targeted across its seed and crop protection operations, as well as through collaboration with farmers.
“Climate change is one of the biggest issues we face in agriculture, as well as one of the most pressing challenges facing humanity,” said Hugh Grant, Monsanto chairman and chief executive officer. “That’s why we have pledged to do our part within our own business and to help support farmers and others. While progress has been made to reduce agriculture’s carbon footprint, we must work collectively to do even more if we are going to sustainably feed 9.6 billion people by 2050. Agriculture is uniquely positioned to deliver climate change solutions, and we hope that policy makers recognize the role agriculture, farmers and crops can play in mitigating carbon emissions.”
The company’s efforts focus on several key areas:
At the center of achieving and verifying carbon neutral crop production is the advancement of data science in agriculture. Innovations from The Climate Corporation, a division of Monsanto, and other data scientists have allowed farmers to plant and harvest crops more precisely than ever. Examples include the use of satellite imagery to precisely target emerging pest problems or the development of sophisticated algorithms that model the exact fertilizer needs of each field. The continued integration of this data allows farmers to make more precise decisions, and when used in conjunction with agronomic best practices, can lead to carbon neutral crop production.
“This program is a critical step in agriculture’s overall effort to mitigate climate change,” said Dr. Chuck Rice, Distinguished Professor, Kansas State University and an author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report. “The recent IPCC report indicated that agriculture is a significant pathway to mitigating greenhouse gases. Similar to other formalized carbon offset and renewable energy credit programs, organizations have started to invest in verified offsets originating from agricultural activities. Agriculture can be a positive force in the fight against climate change, and it’s important to see Monsanto stepping forward in this way.”
Farmers’ interest in adoption of these practices will require ongoing demonstration of the best practices and benefits related to carbon neutral cropping program. “My goal is long-term sustainability – raising crops as sustainably and environmentally friendly as I can,” said Tim Smith, an Iowa farmer from Eagle Grove. “Using these best practices together has proven to not only be good for the environment, but it also maximizes my productivity. In recent years, rainfall events have been more intense in terms of quantity and in frequency, so it is even more important today to implement practices that will help to protect soil from serious erosion losses. As a farmer and steward of the land, it is encouraging to know that implementing these practices on my farm can be an important contribution in addressing climate change.”
For more resources and information on Monsanto’s climate change efforts and collaborations, visit monsanto.info/climatech15, monsanto.info/cccoll15 and read Monsanto’s 2014 sustainability report, From the Inside Out.
About Monsanto Company
Monsanto is committed to bringing a broad range of solutions to help nourish our growing world. We produce seeds for fruits, vegetables and key crops – such as corn, soybeans, and cotton – that help farmers have better harvests while using water and other important resources more efficiently. We work to find sustainable solutions for soil health, help farmers use data to improve farming practices and conserve natural resources, and provide crop protection products to minimize damage from pests and disease. Through programs and partnerships, we collaborate with farmers, researchers, nonprofit organizations, universities and others to help tackle some of the world’s biggest challenges. To learn more about Monsanto, our commitments and our more than 20,000 dedicated employees, please visit: discover.monsanto.com and monsanto.com. Follow our business on Twitter® at twitter.com/MonsantoCo, on the company blog, Beyond the Rows® at monsantoblog.com or subscribe to our News Release RSS Feed.