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Enhancing Soil health through Values-based business models

Project description

Growing incentives for soil health restoration

The protection and restoration of soil health is an EU priority. It is important to boost awareness about the value of investing in soil health and to increase opportunities for investments in soil health across value chains. It is also important for land managers to understand the incentives and how to capture the value generated by ecosystem services such as climate regulation and water storage and purification. Against this background, the EU-funded SoilValues will contribute to the conditions for developing successful soil health business models. These are models in which land managers make production decisions that result in higher levels of soil-based ecosystem services. In addition to establishing the indicators and models to measure outcomes, the project will establish testing grounds across Europe and design a toolbox of incentives and policy recommendations.

Objective

Land managers combine man-made resources with natural resources to produce marketable products like food, feed, fiber and wood, but at the same time produce ecosystem services that are generally not marketed or compensated. However, land managers generally have little incentive to invest in healthy soils, as they cannot sufficiently capture the value generated by these ecosystem services. SoilValues aims to contribute to the conditions for developing successful soil health business models. These are models in which land managers make production decisions that result in higher levels of soil-based ecosystem services (SES) and in which they are paid for the non-marketed services they generate. In order for such business models to function, three important conditions need to be fulfilled: (1) the outcomes of SES need to be measured, thus requiring knowledge, indicators and models, (2) the data and information generated by these indicators and models need to be exchanged to facilitate monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV), and (3) all these activities should be governed by an appropriate institutional framework consisting of the necessary legislation, standards and incentive schemes. To enhance the conditions for developing successful soil health business models, SoilValues will: (1) provide a comprehensive assessment framework addressing all factors influencing the development of business models for investing in soil health, (2) establish 6 testing grounds across Europe to test and improve emerging and designing new soil health business models, (3) establish 12 communities of practice of land managers, value chain actors, investors and public authorities for soil health business models, (4) design a comprehensive toolbox of incentives and policy recommendations to facilitate soil health business models and (5) raise awareness and exchange knowledge for soil health business models.

Keywords

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Coordinator

KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT LEUVEN
Net EU contribution
€ 393 125,00
Address
Oude markt 13
3000 Leuven
Belgium

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Region
Vlaams Gewest Prov. Vlaams-Brabant Arr. Leuven
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Links
Other funding
€ 0,00

Participants (13)