Bayer has launched a new carbon initiative that will reward farmers in Brazil and the US for implementing carbon capture and sequestration technologies in order to help agriculture reduce its carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions.

The company has said the initiative’s 2020/2021 season will consist of approximately 1,200 farmers who will receive assistance in implementing climate-smart practises, Bayer will then acquire the carbon removals created by those practices at transparent prices.

“If anyone has a vested interest in battling climate change, it’s farmers and we are committed to developing new business models like this unique carbon initiative to help them in that fight,” said Brett Begemann, Chief Operating Officer of Bayer’s Crop Science Division. 

According to Bayer, soil is one of the most effective ways of sequestering carbon. Today, whilst farmers get rewarded for food, feed and fibre production, Bayer will now further those opportunities and allow farmers to be awarded for sustainability efforts. 

Bayer plans to expand the programme in the US and Brazil to other farmers, then later into other world regions with tailored approaches that will allow growers to choose what climate-smart practices and implantation works best.

In Europe, the company is exploring how the approach can be adapted as part of the European Green Deal. In Asia-Pacific, the company’s goal is to help increase productivity for small holder farmers as well as reduce methane emissions from rice farming.

“We are excited to partner with farmers through this new Bayer Carbon Initiative,” Begemann continued. “We’re honoured to take this major step with farmers to create a carbon-zero future for agriculture, an important legacy that we can create with farmers to leave to the next generation.”