Soil and Water Outcomes Fund Produces More Than Tenfold Increase in Environmental Outcomes in 2021
December 9, 2021
Originally released from Soil and Water Outcomes Fund 12.9.2021
ANKENY, IA and WASHINGTON, DC—The Soil and Water Outcomes Fund today announced that carbon sequestration and nutrient reduction outcomes produced by participating farms in Iowa, Illinois, Ohio, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina in 2021 are projected to be more than 10 times greater than the totals from the prior year. Enrollment is completed for 2021 across the six states, with more than 120,000 acres of cropland contracted in the program by farmers adding new conservation practices such as cover crops and reduced tillage.
The preliminary environmental outcomes resulting from practices implemented by Soil and Water Outcomes Fund farmers are:
- More than 111,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e) sequestered (a 260% reduction from baseline levels). This is equivalent to removing 24,250 cars from the road for one year.
- Nearly 112,400 pounds of Phosphorus prevented from leaving enrolled fields (a 27% reduction from baseline levels).
- More than 1.9 million pounds of Nitrogen prevented from leaving enrolled fields (a 28% reduction from baseline levels).
- $33.60 average farmer payment per acre.
“We are thrilled with farmer’s willingness to enroll in an outcomes-based program and even more excited about the environmental benefits resulting from the addition of new conservation practices,” said Adam Kiel, managing director of the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund and executive vice president of AgOutcomes.
“Our 10x-plus growth this year reflects the growing market for an efficient and turnkey solution that puts farmers first,” said Dan Yeoman, managing director of the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund and CEO of ReHarvest Partners. “We look forward to continued expansion in 2022 with new and existing corporate and government partners across more states and commodities.”
The Soil and Water Outcomes Fund is widely regarded as the most farmer-friendly ecosystems services offering on the market today because of its ease of enrollment, simple contracting, local support from conservation agronomists, and industry-leading farmer payments.
“The Soil and Water Outcomes Fund provides a great incentive to create and expand conservation practices on my farm; helping protect our land for this generation and the ones to follow,” said Ryan Vavroch, a farmer from Iowa enrolled in the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund.
In 2021, the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund worked with a mix of public and private partners to support farmer’s conservation efforts. Outcome financing partners include Cargill, Nutrien Ag Solutions, PepsiCo, Ingredion, BASF, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Dubuque County Board of Supervisors, City of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, City of Ames, Iowa, and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Additional support is provided by the Agriculture Technology & Environmental Stewardship Foundation, American Farmland Trust, the Illinois Soybean Association, the Iowa Soybean Association, Ohio Corn & Wheat, and the Ohio Soybean Association.
“We’re always looking for the best way to partner with farmers and are pleased to work with the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund to partner with growers in our supply chain to enhance regenerative agriculture outcomes in a way that keeps farms strong today and for the future,” said Margaret Henry, director of sustainable agriculture at PepsiCo. “And we are looking at expanding our partnership into new geographies in the year ahead.”
Data provided by farmers enrolling in the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund is analyzed by EcoPractices®, a third-party quantification platform developed by Sustainable Environmental Consultants. In addition to modeling all enrolled fields, 10 percent of fields are selected for ongoing soil and water sampling. Remote sensing and field visits to every enrolled field are used to ensure contract compliance. Staff from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) also conducted spot checks of random fields to ensure conservation practices have been implemented per NRCS standards.
The Soil and Water Outcomes Fund is a partnership of AgOutcomes, a subsidiary of the Iowa Soybean Association, and ReHarvest Partners, a subsidiary of Quantified Ventures. The Outcomes Fund uses the leading biophysical models and scientifically rigorous approaches to quantify carbon sequestration and water outcomes while providing technical assistance to aid growers on their journey to increase profitability through sustainability. AgOutcomes leads the agronomic and farmer relations elements of the operation, and ReHarvest Partners manages the financial and contracting aspects of the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund.
AgOutcomes connects growers with opportunities to produce valued environmental outcomes. AgOutcomes recruits growers for enrollment in the Soil and Water Outcomes Fund, provides customer support and technical assistance to growers, works with affiliated recruiters, monitors soil and water in enrolled fields, assists with the outcome validation process, and conducts field visits with enrolled growers. AgOutcomes is a subsidiary of the Iowa Soybean Association.
About ReHarvest Partners
ReHarvest Partners is leading the transition to a more regenerative system of agriculture by creatively deploying capital and structuring unique partnerships. ReHarvest Partners’ outcomes-based approach aligns the interests of investors, growers, consumers, companies, and government to enhance natural systems. Our mission is to deploy investment capital to cultivate a system of agriculture that enhances rural economies and regenerates ecosystems. ReHarvest Partners is a subsidiary of Quantified Ventures.
EcoPractices® by Sustainable Environmental Consultants is changing the environmental sustainability narrative. EcoPractices® delivers value-chain solutions for CPG companies and nonprofit organizations by delivering field-level quantification and practice verification services for a complete spectrum of environmental impacts including soil health, water quality, carbon sequestration, and greenhouse gas emissions. Our team of Ph.D.s, agronomists, environmental scientists, and ag engineers are driven by our mission to better the planet. EcoPractices® is an industry-leading independent third-party platform.
About Sustainable Environmental Consultants
Established in 2008, Sustainable Environmental Consultants is part of the Wright Service Corp. employee-owned family of companies. Since its inception, SEC has endeavored to be a leader in providing innovative solutions to better the planet through sustainability risk management, third-party data reporting and verification, and agricultural compliance and engineering. We provide a full range of environmental services needed by food companies and their agriculture supply systems. To learn more, visit www.sustainableenviro.com.