20 September 2023, US: Corteva’s initial efforts in integrating nature-positive financial decision-making into our core business strategies include our pilot TNFD project, which highlights both our innovative products in our pipeline as well as the partnerships we’ve forged to advance biodiversity and set new standards for corporate accountability.
As the world continues to focus on sustainable agriculture and its role in enhancing food security, Corteva Agriscience isn’t just participating in the conversation but leading in the field of actionable commitments.
Since announcing our biodiversity goal in 2022, we’ve been engaged as a thought leader and partner in piloting how to report on the biodiversity risks and opportunities, via frameworks like the recently launched Taskforce on Nature-Related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) framework. The framework was developed as an impact management and disclosure guideline for organizations to report and act on evolving nature-related impacts of their operations.
Below we explore Corteva’s initial efforts in integrating nature-positive financial decision-making into our core business strategies. This includes our pilot TNFD project, which highlights both our innovative products in our pipeline as well as the partnerships we’ve forged to advance biodiversity and set new standards for corporate accountability.
The TNFD LEAP Framework in Agriscience and Corteva’s Biodiversity Focus
The pilot project also features the TNFD LEAP framework—a four-stage process designed to help companies understand and manage their nature-related footprint. The project focuses on the first two stages: “Locate,” which identifies high-impact sites, and “Evaluate,” which assesses nature-related impacts and dependencies.
Our pilot is complemented by our own ambitious biodiversity goals, which include our aim to support biodiversity and regenerative agriculture on 25 million acres by 2030. This will be achieved through a multi-pronged approach that includes products, productivity, partnerships, and operational improvements.
Product & Productivity Innovations that Support Biodiversity and Nature
Our focus here is about creating both higher genetic gain and a sustainable agricultural ecosystem. Corteva has developed lower-profile products that excel in crop protection and crop health while maintaining a harmonious relationship with beneficial soil organisms.
A great example is Reklemel™, a selective nematicide that targets damaging nematodes without harming beneficial soil organisms. This nuanced approach to crop protection ensures that while crops are safeguarded from pests, the soil’s natural ecosystem is not disrupted.
Another example is the work we are doing to innovate across the seed technology spectrum which encompasses conventional, genetically modified, and gene-edited breeding techniques, all aimed at increasing yield while reducing the need for land-use change. This technology can enable conservation cropping systems, like double cropping, which can reduce the need for land use change to grow additional crops. By optimizing yield per acre through advanced seed genetics and efficient cropping systems, Corteva has been instrumental in preventing approximately 240 million hectares from being converted into crop production. To put this into perspective, the amount of land preserved is equivalent to the average harvested area in the entire Western Hemisphere.
The implications of this land-saving strategy extend far beyond just preserving natural habitats. It has a direct impact on climate change mitigation by avoiding the emission of over 140 billion metric tons of CO2equivalent annually. This is a monumental achievement that aligns with global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change.
Partnerships and Collaborations
Partnerships form the backbone of Corteva’s biodiversity initiatives. The company has teamed up with conservation non-profits like Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever to improve plant and wildlife biodiversity across millions of acres in the U.S. These collaborations are vital for achieving broader sustainability targets and complement the TNFD pilot project.
As Aly Wells, Corteva’s Biodiversity Program Lead, says,
“The outcomes of our partnerships are designed to be quantifiable markers of our accountability, driving conservation, biodiversity, and community engagement.”
Operational Biodiversity Support
Corteva is not just talking the talk but walking the walk. At our Waialua, Hawaii Parent Seed Farm, we’ve implemented a diverse cover-cropping system and native tree breaks to support a healthy, productive soil system.
Each of these pillars – product innovations, productivity, partnerships and operational improvement – helped guide the implementation of the TNFD pilot project, which will help to better inform our sustainability strategy and nature-related impact assessments. By being one of the first agriscience companies to test the TNFD framework in its direct operations and sharing insights gained in this case study, Corteva reaffirms its commitment to promoting a nature-positive impact within the industry.
Indeed, our pilot work and biodiversity goals are more than corporate commitments. They are a roadmap for a sustainable future in agriculture. By better understanding nature impacts with biodiversity preservation, Corteva is setting a precedent for how agriculture can continue to contribute to a more sustainable and financially resilient world.
Learn more about Corteva’s pilot of the TNFD with Keystone, our collective pilot of the TNFD with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and our peers, as well as our sustainability efforts and how you can contribute by visiting our website and Sustainability & ESG Report which highlights our Product Biodiversity & Yield Gain, Partnership, and Operational biodiversity strategies.
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