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World Business Council for Sustainable Development
Protecting Land in Agricultural Areas
The business case
Syngenta Crop Protection Canada and Ducks Unlimited Canada have embarked on a unique and valuable partnership that aims to protect environmentally sensitive land located in agricultural areas. Through two programs, the Small Marsh Restoration Program restoring wetlands and the Saskatchewan Rangeland Stewardship Program educating growers on sustainable management practices on their farms, Syngenta benefits from the ground demonstration of the company’s commitment to customers, government, environment and stakeholders and ensures that farmers are using the company’s products responsibly. Syngenta is a world leading agribusiness operating in the crop protection and seeds businesses, employing 21,000 people in over 90 countries. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, the company has operations in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, Asia Pacific and North America. Syngenta helps growers meet the growing population’s need for safe, affordable and nutritious food, grown in a sustainable way through innovative research and technology. Syngenta is committed to the optimization of natural resource management, to the maintenance and enhancement of the economic viability of farming, and to the protection of the environment and biodiversity. Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) is an international leader in wetland conservation. It is a not-for-profit organization with a high level of recognition in rural communities and with Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada and Environment Canada. The fact that they asked Syngenta to partner with them is a compliment and shows that Syngenta is recognized as successful in communicating how serious it is about sustainable agriculture. DUC and Syngenta share a vision of sustainable agriculture where farmers are economically viable and agricultural processes such as soil conservation, biodiversity and the protection of water quality are integral components of farm management. DUC coordinates a number of agriculturally focused restoration, conservation and demonstration programs in areas across the country.
The main objective of the Wetland Conservation project was to restore wetlands to provide habitats for wildlife. This was a non-profit project demonstrating Syngenta’s commitment to sustainable agriculture.
The information contained in the EFP is the farmer’s property. Permits are required under environmental protection laws where wetlands are being enhanced (i. technology transfer). in 2004.WBCSD page 2 Activities DUC approached Syngenta in 2003 as a possible partner for projects that support land and water management on agricultural lands. Canadian farmers develop Environmental Farm Plans (EFP) that allow the farmer to assess his own farm for different factors and address areas at his or her own initiative but taking advantage of programs that provide support. The Maritime Small Marsh Restoration Program restores small.6 hectare). writes the plan and applies for permits where required by the province. The projects are slightly different. The Saskatchewan Rangeland Stewardship Program educates and aids growers in the adoption of sustainable management practices on their farms. Within the EFP there is a section on ecological resources that looks at habitat for restoration. Where new wetlands are being established. but at the same time indicates due diligence and can been used to protect the farmer. designed to fit specific regional agricultural needs..).8-1. DUC has a field staff that conducts on-site assessments. Results For the Maritime Small Marsh Restoration Program. 2-4 acre (0. DUC then hires the construction contractor and overseas the project. marshes located in the fertile zones of the Maritime Provinces (New Brunswick. Syngenta signed another agreement with DUC to support a different type of program called the Saskatchewan Rangeland Stewardship Program. Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island) to improve water quality and provide wildlife habitat. They are also useful for catchment of storm water runoff.e. . This is also supported by the Federal Department of Agriculture. DUC also organizes tours for farmers to explain how these programs work with both types of projects (i. The support of this program created excitement within Syngenta CP Canada so. permits are not necessary. The program is targeted towards agricultural lowland landscapes and creates shallow open water areas with some vegetation for cover.e. a total of 78 projects were completed in 2004 and 2005 resulting in 244 acres of land being restored. improved functionality. All projects are on private lands associated with agricultural operations and conservation agreements are established between the landowners and DUC to secure the wetland and the buffer strip areas for 30 years. thereby protecting streams and rivers from severe weather events. For the wetlands. This aims to act as a trigger to encourage farms to contact DUC to discuss opportunities related to their lands. Word of mouth also plays an important role as there is no advertising. more open water. Environmentally sensitive areas have been identified in Saskatchewan and all producers participating in the program operate farms in these areas. Syngenta has also organized farm tours for customers in western Canada. DUC and Syngenta quickly recognized their shared commitment to environmental stewardship to support the efforts of farmers.. Syngenta signed a 3-year agreement to support the Maritime Small Marsh Restoration Program. Buffer strips are left around the edge of the wetland and livestock access to the wetland is controlled. etc. larger. Additional referrals to DUC come through the provincial government (as tied to EFPs through departments of Agriculture or Natural Resources) and requests by farmers.
between Canada and the USA. The project also effectively demonstrates intensity through development of extensive internal and external partnerships and enthusiasm internally. 4. from various tours (grower tours.wbcsd. The benefits of the partnership between Syngenta and DUC are far reaching. It also demonstrates and encourages the farmers to use best practice. Our members are drawn from more than 30 countries and 20 major industrial sectors. innovate and grow in a world increasingly shaped by sustainable development issues.org www. affecting various parties and the sustainability of the projects are guaranteed into the future. growers and cross-boarder funding support. and to support the business license to operate. We also benefit from a global network of around 60 national and regional business councils and partner organizations. to date 8 producers have worked with DUC and Syngenta to adopt sustainable management practices that include solar-powered watering systems with shallow buried pipelines for livestock watering. and externally between an important non-governmental organization (Ducks Unlimited). chemin de Conches CH – 1231 Conches-Geneva Switzerland Tel: +41 (22) 839 31 00 Fax: +41 (22) 839 31 31 E-mail: Web: carpenter@wbcsd.WBCSD page 3 For the Saskatchewan Rangeland Stewardship Program. the use of windmills for aeration and winter watering. the enthusiasm of its people to participate in programs that support growers and organizations willing to protect the environment and that Syngenta Canada is contributing to the quality of life of its customers. and the incorporation of winter wheat into their crop rotation. government affairs and business development.org . public affairs. ecological balance and social progress. Outcomes for the growers Participating growers benefit from the restored natural habitats on their properties and from the financial and environmental benefits of including sustainable practices on their farms. ensuring that they are using the company’s products responsibly. Syngenta has renewed its contract on these projects for another 3 years. Syngenta has received significant recognition for its involvement through the use of the Syngenta logo prominently displayed on signs at each location. Outcomes for DUC DUC benefits from this project with Syngenta as they gain the necessary funds and participation from Syngenta needed to reach their conservation goals. Our mission is to provide business leadership as a catalyst for change toward sustainable development. Lessons learned It has been very valuable to do these projects as they demonstrate the company’s commitment to the environment. cross fencing. marketing. The adoption of these practices also helps to ensure the sustainability of their operations for future generations. and from various articles that have been published about the partnership. Syngenta has worked with participating growers to host tours of their farms to showcase the sustainable practices adopted and has organized other fund raising events to bring awareness to the program. Syngenta benefits from this project through the company’s demonstration of commitment to the environment and its customers and also through the public recognition that DUC has given Syngenta. About the WBCSD The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) brings together some 200 international companies in a shared commitment to sustainable development through economic growth. media tours and DUC Director tours). therefore making use of North American free trade opportunities. Outcomes for Syngenta This partnership shows the company’s respect for nature.
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