CLIMATE - SOIL - BALTIC SEA - BIODIVERSITY
Project: stn MULTA: Multi-benefit solutions to climate-smart agriculture
Duration: 2019–2022, possible continuation 2022– 2025
Person in charge: Prof. Jari Liski, Finnish Meteorological Institute
Consortium: Finnish Meteorological Institute, BSAG, University of Helsinki (INAR – Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research and the departments of microbiology, economy and agriculture), Natural Resources Institute Finland LUKE, Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, and University of Zurich.
Consortium PI: Prof. Jari Liski, FMI & Deputy PI: Prof. Kristiina Regina, Natural Resources Institute LUKE, Research Coordinator: Layla Höckerstedt, firstname.lastname@example.org
Funder: Strategic Research Council at the Academy of Finland
Food system is facing a need for a systemic change. It should harness its significant potential to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions while producing healthy food sustainably to a growing population under changing environmental conditions. An unused asset of agriculture, one of the most effective natural climate solutions, is the capability of regenerating soil to sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide. Regenerative agriculture supports also other sustainability goals, such as soil health and productivity, biodiversity, water quality, resilience and food quality.
stn MULTA aims at i) designing climate-smart agricultural solutions that are widely beneficial to food systems, ii) testing their application in practical farm scale, iii) developing a verification system for the carbon sequestration and other climate impacts to be used in policy and markets and iv) developing economic measures and policies to promote the implementation of these solutions in Finland and abroad. True collaboration between different scientific disciplines and interaction specialists has been designed to reach this aim.
stn MULTA 1) studies processes of carbon sequestration and climate impacts focusing on knowledge gaps, 2) studies how these processes can be enhanced using farming practices and how these climate-smart practices can be implemented on farms , 3) develops a methodology for verifying carbon sequestration and the climate impacts for the purposes of climate and other policies and markets, and 4) studies policies and economics that support climate-smart farming and its role in the food system, climate policy and society in general.
stn MULTA utilizes co-design and interaction with committed stakeholders to ensure practicality and high societal impact of the project’s solutions. The project designs and tests the agricultural practices on its network of 108 Carbon Action farms. It works together with major food companies all interested in improving the climate footprint of their production. It discusses the results and co-designs their impact on policies of climate, environment and agriculture with politicians and civil servants in Finland and the EU. National greenhouse gas inventories are also an impact channel as many European countries use our models in their inventories already. stn MULTA contacts media proactively to disseminate the results. The project’s work is a pilot example of implementing climate-smart agriculture in food systems, and has export potential to other countries.
Work packages (WP):
Other sites of research and their PIs:
Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Dr. Tuomas Mattila
INAR – Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research, Associate Prof. Annalea Lohila
University of Zürich, Prof. Anna-Liisa Laine
Press release of the project and a comprehensive list of stakeholders and researchers can be found here.
Carbon sequestration on farmland and the factors that affect it, can now be monitored in real time on the new Field Observatory website. Field observatory can be used to present current levels as well as demonstrate the future potential of soil carbon sequestration.
E-college for regenerative farming
The e-college for regenerative farming provides farmers with up-to-date and science-based information on practices that improve soil, yields and the ecological status. The free online course has been conducted together with farmers, researchers and actors in the Finnish food chain. The goal is for the course to be attended by 5,000 farmers in his year, more than 10 percent of Finnish farmers.