Quebec partners committed to fighting CO2 emissions in Latin America
The Sustainable Soil Management Fund (URAPI), an initiative of ECOTIERRA, Sherbrooke, and Fondaction, has just raised a total of US$50 million (CA$63 million). URAPI will enable the realization of sustainable agroforestry projects in Latin America aimed at reducing land degradation and global CO2 emissions.
The benefits of the projects implemented in the field are not only environmental, but also social and economic. Two projects have already been started before the closing of the fund, one in Peru, the other in Colombia. “Since 2018, the Café Selva Norte project in Peru has, among other things, enabled 500 family units to increase their average income by 300%,” says the press release announcing this news.
“Before URAPI, piecemeal financing of each project was a recurring challenge. Together with the fund, which is now reaching its full potential, this allows us to focus 100% on project development and field operations. It is extremely stimulating, because the impact of our activities is palpable”, explains the CEO of ECOTIERRA, Étienne Desmarais.
ECOTIERRA manages and deploys its expertise on South American soil. The proven cultivation technique under ECOTIERRA trees increases the productivity rate per hectare of cultivable land compared to more traditional techniques that use monoculture and burning. It represents a viable solution to soil degradation, as it avoids the depletion of the land, then the migration of the producer to another cultivable lot, which would lead to a new cycle of land degradation.
“This partnership between ECOTIERRA and Fondaction demonstrates our ability to attract investors and mobilize capital from here and elsewhere with the common objective of fighting against land degradation and climate change”, explains Marc-André Binette , Deputy Chief Investment Officer at Fondaction by press release. Local investors such as the Fondation de l'Université de Sherbrooke and the Fondation de l'Université Concordia participate in the URAPI fund.