Fertile Ground: How Soil Carbon Can Be a Cash Crop for the Climate Age

For generations, Canadian farmers have been financially rewarded for the food they produce. The more bushels of wheat a farmer grows—and the greater price that commodity fetches on markets—the larger the return will be.

Yet by embracing sustainable practices, farmers also hold unparalleled power to cut emissions, and to improve air and water quality, soil health and biodiversity.

Tapping that power will require capital. While the current potential of sustainable agriculture is robust, the economics underpinning it are not. We’ll need to price in sustainable practices while supplying the funding and financial instruments to de-risk and incentivize their use. And we’ll need to rethink an economic system that wholly rewards agricultural production while placing little value on preservation.

These efforts—supported by a national MRV protocol and cross-industry partnerships—can be the foundation of a world-leading sustainable agriculture strategy.