ESMC Wins Soy Innovation Challenge Prize
March 4, 2021: Falls Church, VA
Ecosystem Services Market Consortium (ESMC) was awarded a cash prize from the Soy Innovation Challenge in recognition of its innovative markets for greenhouse gases, water quality and water efficiency in agriculture.
The Innovation Challenge prize from the Yield Lab Institute, United Soybean Board (USB), Syngenta, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and the ICL Group will accelerate launch of ESMC’s emerging marketplace.
“We are truly honored to receive this recognition from the Soy Innovation Challenge,” ESMC Executive Director Debbie Reed said. “Robust public-private partnerships like ours are a key to manage the environmental threats we all face. This grant confirms that ESMC’s science-based, standards-based program and due diligence building a program with integrity and credibility are needed. Next year ESMC will launch its program at scale, and the recognition and support from this prize will support launch preparations.”
Programs that match producers and buyers of carbon and water credits have long suffered from multiple shortcomings. Limited market size and limited tools and methods to measure, verify, and certify credits at scale continue to hamper market liquidity.
ESMC’s approach is different. Instead of paying producers for a practice, such as planting cover crops, for instance, ESMC pays for actual changes in soil carbon, greenhouse gases, water quality and water use. ESMC’s systems approach gives growers far more flexibility to make a difference. Farmers and ranchers alike can participate in ESMC, since cropping and livestock production systems across the country are covered.
ESMC’s non-profit structure and program integrity – including investments in market infrastructure and generation of credible, certified credits – sets it apart from others in the ecosystem services marketplace.