Mars joins Livelihoods Carbon Fund as part of ongoing environmental improvement drives
The US-headquartered Mars group has combined with a total of 13 other companies including food sector firms to assist the delivery of the 3rd Livelihoods Carbon Fund (LCF3), reports Neill Barston.
As the business noted, its investment in the €150m fund through 2044 will support greenhouse gas reduction projects linked to creating social and economic impact for local communities.
According to the joint-venture, the LCF3 is aiming to improve the lives of 2 million people and will invest in large-scale projects to promote sustainable farming practices and restore natural ecosystems. In return, those involved – including Danone, Chanel, McCain Foods, and L’OCCITANE Group – will receive an estimated 30 million carbon credits over the duration of the fund.
Mars, through its Sustainable in a Generation Plan, is actively engaged in reducing carbon emissions in our value chain and will use credits like those from LCF3 to help neutralise the impact of any residual emissions it cannot remove. The company announced in 2017, that it would be making a total investment of $1 billion towards improving sustainability within its supply chains – including its key cocoa sector markets serving the wider confectionery and chocolate industries.
As the Livelihoods collaboration explains, the ongoing series of schemes was born out of the realisation that preserving the world’s natural resources is inseparable from fighting for the dignity of men and women who look after the land they cultivate and make a living out of it.
Since its creation in 2011, its mission has been driven by two core principles: no transformation can be achieved without the direct involvement of the communities concerned. Plus, no single actor can achieve sustainable transformation alone. Livelihoods’ principles of action were defined in Livelihoods Charter back in 2009, when several European businesses decided to join forces and share investment risks.
According to the group, the scheme invests in large-scale projects to restore natural ecosystems, promote sustainable farming practices and access to sustainable rural energy. Examples of successful projects include the restoration of 10,000 hectares of mangroves in Senegal which relied on an exceptional social mobilisation, recreated a rich biodiversity ecosystem, and provided rural communities with new sources of incomes (fish, oysters).
The Livelihoods venture as a whole has worked with NGO organisations on solutions ranging from agroforestry to land restoration in Kenya, Rwanda, India, or Guatemala to name a few, thus improving the resilience and the livelihood of millions of farmers and their families. To date, more than 1.5 million people benefit from the Livelihoods Funds projects and more than 130 million trees have been planted, including mangroves and agroforestry trees.