Carbon Farming: CO2 Capture and Storage via Regenerative Agriculture


Carbon Removal

Technology-based Carbon Capture and Storage

Regenerative agriculture stores CO₂ from the atmosphere in the soil and increases soil quality in the process - a win for the climate, consumers, producers, and the food-retail industry. Carbon is removed by increasing carbon density in the soil and via permanent vegetation such as hedges.

Carbon Farming: CO2 Capture and Storage via Regenerative Agriculture

Regenerative agriculture increases the amount of humus in our soils and their CO2 storage capacity

Agriculture has long been one of the main contributors to the climate crisis. Almost a quarter of all emissions worldwide today are caused by agriculture and forestry. Many conventional agricultural practices destroy the topsoil layer known as humus. This layer consists of 60% carbon, which is released into the atmosphere in the form of CO2 when it is destroyed.

Through regenerative agriculture, this essential humus layer is increasing and instead of releasing CO2, it stores large amounts of it in the soil. Storing CO2 in our soil leads to negative emissions which are a necessary part of the global climate strategy. Regenerative practices could store up to 11 gigatonnes of CO2 in soils each year worldwide (80% of the needed yearly negative emissions), making it one of the most potent solutions to fight climate change.


Solving the climate crisis, food security, and biodiversity loss

Besides its potential to permanently store climate-damaging greenhouse gases in the soil, regenerative practices have a positive impact on ecosystems and global food systems. Practices such as flower strips, hedges, and agroforestry provide important habitats for insects, animals, and microorganisms that increase soil health.

Furthermore, yields are stabilized through regenerative cultivation, contributing to making our food system future-proof and ready for a growing global population. The increased water storage capacity of regenerative soils also makes them more resistant to droughts and therefore more climate-resilient.

The impact of regenerative practices in a nutshell: (1 t of carbon corresponds to ~3.67 t of CO)

  • Catch crops: 0.15 - 0.19 t carbon per hectare land per year
  • Cover crops: 0.25 t carbon per hectare land per year
  • Fallow land: 0.42 - 0.72 t carbon per hectare land per year
  • Flower strips: 0.42 - 0.72 t carbon per hectare land per year

However, a few hurdles exist for farmers to keep operating in the conventional system:  

  • Knowledge access & a supportive community,
  • Appreciation & recognition by consumers,
  • Bridge financing, as a farmer's revenue will drop in the transition phase before recovering again by switching to regenerative practices.


Transparent, additional and permanent credits

Klim CO₂ Credits & the Klim Label enable certified farmers to convert to regenerative methods by providing them financial support and incentivizing them with social nudges. The verification process employs cost-effective method-based approaches, as well as random quality checks at the farms, on-field verification and digital checks. The most conservative estimate for the carbon sequestration potential is used. Through digital companion, farmers document all methods in detail, enabling real-time verification and full traceability of the Credits. Regular reports offer a full account over farmers and methods supported.

Only activities that previously have not yet been applied by the farmer and that would not have happened without financial support are funded, therefore fulfilling the criterion of additionality. Double funding is strictly prohibited.

To achieve permanence of carbon storage, KLIM combines 1) financial and 2) behavioral methodologies to ensure that farmers not only keep on using regenerative methods, but even expand its use on their farmland. In combination, this ensures maximum permanence for as long as the farmland is used for agricultural purposes, and for at least 5 years.

Financial nudges: 20% of a farmer's payout is kept as a permanence insurance and is granted to the farmer in the 5th year only if he/she has kept up or increased the use of regenerative methods. The financial vesting scheme being implemented on a rolling yearly basis increases the farmer's opportunity costs of stopping to use regenerative methods over the years.

Behavioral nudges: KLIM educates farmers in order for them to understand that regenerative methods make their farms more profitable (via reduced needs for inputs such as fertilizers) and climate-resilient (via improved water retention rates in the soils that ensure yields even in times of droughts). This is achieved by quantifying the advantages, and likewise by indicating negative consequences of aborting a transition. Various behavioral science-based "nudges" are used, such as comparisons with other farmers.

The Sustainable Development Goals or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a "shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future".
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