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Voluntary Ecosystem Services Market Development Progresses

Noble Research Institute has provided an update on its efforts to advance ecosystem service markets (ESM) that incentivize farmers and ranchers to improve soil health systems. The development team has offered a preview of the ESM protocol to a number of food and beverage firms to seek feedback to incorporate into the final draft version of the methodology. A pilot phase will take place during 2019 and 2020, across 70,000 acres in Texas and Oklahoma that are involved in Noble Land Stewardship Program. Meanwhile, the protocol team will be drafting adaptations for the protocol to be applied to additional crop production systems and geographies around the country. NRI says that although the initial focus of the program will be on monetizing soil carbon and water quality and quantity, the program will expand over time to include additional environmental and ecosystem service attributes from working agricultural lands.