The Carbon Underground is building a diverse coalition of businesses, organizations, schools, and governments to create global climate stability through the widespread transition of farms and ranches from industrial into regenerative enterprises. To facilitate this transition, we are currently focusing on five key initiatives.
SOIL CARBON INITIATIVE (SCI)
SCI is a verifiable standard for regenerative agriculture that easily and affordably enables the measurement of regenerative progress and soil health. It was launched by The Carbon Underground and developed in partnership with Danone, General Mills, Green America, MegaFood, and Ben & Jerry’s. It supplies food manufacturers and producers with better information to accelerate the transition to regenerative practices while a) helping soil; b) helping farmers; and c) helping to mitigate the climate crisis.
Visit soilcarboninitiative.org to learn more.
In 2019 TCU was invited by the Ministry of Thailand to present a keynote address at the World Of Unburnt Farms in Bangkok. This major pan-Asian conference (1000+ delegates) introduced opportunities for nations to restore their highly damaged soil by transitioning to regenerative agriculture. If implemented, the adoption of regenerative practices would increase agricultural opportunities and satisfy emerging demand for regeneratively grown products.
To support our promise, a representative of Just Foods (Just Egg and other products) joined us in Thailand with a promise to transition growing operations there and commit to significant purchase orders. Today Just is purchasing millions of dollars of product from Thailand every month, while TCU and partners are looking at adding several more types of crops to scale regeneratively.
ADOPT-A-METER- A People-Powered program to help draw down carbon.
This program was inspired by a United Nations report stating that over two billion people are extremely concerned about climate change and want to do something, but feel there is nothing an individual can do to make a difference. To change that thinking and satisfy this emerging opportunity, The Carbon Underground created Adopt-A Meter, where anyone, anywhere in the world, can adopt a square meter of degraded soil for just $5, or local equivalent. Adopt-A-Meter uses the funds, to grant to organizations and farmers to help them transition to regenerative practices. To date, our grants have already restored tens of millions of meters, and we just launched our Women In Farming program (launched on Mother’s Day) where funds will directly support female farmers around the world.
Learn more at adopt-a-meter.org.
COVID 19 FOOD BOX PROGRAM
In mid 2020, The Carbon Underground joined a coalition of groups including The Wave, Food Fleet, Native Tribes of the Northwest and scores of companies and donors in the Pacific Northwest to help procure, assemble and distribute boxes of food for people going hungry due to the pandemic.
TCU helps source food from regenerative farms, ranches, and fishermen. Millions of pounds of food have been distributed, and there is an opportunity to scale the program nationally in partnership with the federal government. A critical part of the expansion would include regenerative training to bring more farms into the program.
MOVING THE MOVEMENT
TCU is constantly working on communications to advance awareness, emerging opportunities, and grow partnerships and commitments across the movement with the goal of accelerating the drawdown of carbon. These include reframing the climate solution from achieving carbon neutrality to the acknowledgement of two interdependent halves—stopping new emissions while drawing down our old legacy emissions—which is necessary to stop climate change.
TCU also worked with the Rodale Institute for their new white paper on soil, their first since their seminal paper in 2013. This version stresses the importance of regenerative agriculture to restore soil and help solve climate change. TCU has also maintained a strong presence in conferences, with a keynote every few weeks, designed to leverage progress as a domino for change.