In the latest and one of the most substantial grant opportunities released this year for agriculture-related ESG work, The USDA announced on February 7th; “the USDA is committed to supporting a diverse set of farmers, ranchers, and forest owners through climate solutions that increase resilience, expand market opportunities and strengthen rural America. The new Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities opportunity provides up to $1 billion for pilot projects that create market opportunities for commodities produced using climate-smart practices. USDA is now accepting project applications for the fiscal year 2022.”
Environmentally conscious practices are necessary for the protection of our shared planet. This is an increasingly popular issue stressed by corporations, investors, government, and the general public. However, as a consequence, this often shines an unflattering light onto industries that have fueled human prosperity such as energy, transportation, and infrastructure due to their substantial carbon footprint.
Like many crops before it, hemp can be bred and cultivated to optimize a single primary application; fiber, grain, or CBD. Unlike the cropsbefore it, however, hemp has had problems with stigma, and years of prohibition which prevented applications from being developed sooner. This lack of global use and infrastructure has resulted in highly specialized genetics in terms of application and growing regions. Now, our industry must adapt to keep up with the changing technology and infrastructure.
Due to time constraints and the incentive to produce credits as fast as possible (prices rising), offset project developers (read: farmers who want to generate carbon offset credits) may elect to start a project and verify via a 3rd party later (rather than the traditional route of verifying before starting). However, while this may give farmers a head start, it should be noted that no credits can be issued before the verification step (and subsequent steps) are completed.
The most basic framework to generate carbon offset credit as per the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) guidelines is as follows…
ESG interest, by way of carbon offset credits, is booming in various industries, spanning energy, infrastructure, transportation, and even agriculture. However, there are unique barriers to an efficient market for carbon credits from agriculture, particularly those derived from croplands.
During the United Nations’ COP26 climate conference in early November, engineering and architectural design firm Skidmore, Owings & Merril (SOM) unveiled Urban Sequoia – a concept to regenerate the environment via buildings that “act like trees” and sequester carbon.
Hemp Concrete or hempcrete results from wet mixing a hemp plant’s shredded stem with a lime mineral-based binder to create a material that can be cast into molds then dried. These molds are commonly used in construction as insulation or some form of concrete. Hempcrete is different than other building materials like standard concrete, plaster, or mortar because of the void space between the mixed hemp strands. The limestone binder acts as an adhesive, setting the fibers permanently but not forming a complete solid.
Starting in 1792 during George Washington’s first term as president, The Old Farmers Almanac has become the longest-running periodical in United States history. While it has had a variety of topics and contributors over the years, it is primarily known for its weather predictions from a secret formula, witty humor, natural remedies, tides, a farming calendar, phenomena, helpful astronomy, and even lore. (An example of lore in this context would be to look out for puffy clouds on July 25th because that means we are in for lots of snow in the coming winter!)