Future Food Solutions has been shortlisted for a prestigious global climate change award that will be judged at COP26.
Future Food Solutions, based in the East Riding of Yorkshire, has been nominated in the ‘Carbon Reduction to Achieve Net Zero’ category of the Climate Challenge Cup for its Sustainable Futures Carbon Bank.
The initiative empowers UK farmers to sequester measurable amounts of carbon into the soil via a range of techniques including growing cover crops between food crop rotations.Not only does this increase soil health and soil organic matter (SOM), reversing soil degradation and restoring its health, it also enables farmers to realise a new revenue stream by selling carbon credits.
One carbon credit is the equivalent of one metric tonne of carbon dioxide being removed from the atmosphere and the scheme is underpinned by a rigorous soil testing regime to ensure that every tonne of soil carbon can be detected, verified and certified before it can be converted into a carbon credit.
The Sustainable Futures Carbon Bank came about as a result of a historic partnership between Future Food Solutions and BCarbon Inc, an American not-for-profit organisation based at the Rice University, Texas.
The exclusive agreement, which was signed in June this year, sees Future Food Solutions work with groups of farmers in the UK to sequester carbon, which is then verified & certified by BCarbon to be sold as carbon credits.
The initiative got underway in Yorkshire this year with the aim of removing 10,000 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere in the first year, but this will increase dramatically as the scheme is opened up to farmers across the UK from January 2022.
Steve Cann, director of Future Food Solutions, said he was absolutely delighted to have been nominated for such a prestigious award.
Mr Cann said: “This nomination recognises the years of hard work we have put into helping farmers farm in more sustainable ways.
“It also recognises the fact that farming can play a leading role in climate change mitigation on a global scale. Farming doesn’t have to be part of the problem; it can be part of the solution.
“But the Sustainable Futures Carbon Bank is not just a way of helping farmers work more sustainability, it is also a way they can establish a new revenue stream, by selling the carbon credits.
“As we transition to a post-Basic Payment Scheme world, and with future support payments being based more on environmental stewardship, it is a win-win for farmers and the planet.”
As well as sequestering carbon, growing cover crops produces a range of other environmental benefits including enhanced biodiversity, particularly pollinators.
Cover crops also ensure water is locked into the ground, helping to keep crop inputs such as NP&K in the field where they belong and vastly reducing the risk of downstream flooding.
The final of the Climate Challenge Cup will be judged on November 10 in the COP26 Green Zone and will be streamed live to a global audience.
Professor Alex Halliday is one of the judges, as well as the founding Dean of Columbia University Climate School and Director of The Earth Institute.
Professor Halliday said “The climate crisis demands innovative solutions developed as partnerships between researchers, businesses, decision makers and communities. The Climate Challenge Cup is a great way to focus attention on some of these breakthrough ideas.”
Read the official Climate Challenge Cup Finalist case study of the Sustainable Futures Carbon Bank here.