The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) today announced its membership of the Sustainable Rice Platform (SRP). Announced at Rice Week, on the occasion of SRP’s 10th Annual Plenary, WBCSD will work with SRP to advance sustainable rice, exploring priority areas including public private financing and consumer demand for sustainable rice.
The announcement builds upon three years of work together on the Sustainable Rice Landscapes Initiative which has already mobilized over USD $60m into seven countries across Asia from the Global Environment Facility, and is currently exploring the scaling of innovative private sector finance solutions for the sector.
The preliminary findings of a pre-feasibility study on financing for sustainable rice, supported by FAO and Just Rural Transition Investment Partnerships (managed by WBCSD), with SRP as Knowledge Partner, and conducted by experts from Clarmondial, will be discussed at Rice Week. This study lays the groundwork for further collaboration on sustainable rice finance.
Half the world’s population, some 3.5 billion people, eat rice as their main staple food, and its production by 144 million smallholder farmers supports the livelihoods of over 1 billion people. At the same time rice crops use 30-40% of the world’s irrigation water and contributes as much greenhouse gases as aviation, due to huge amounts of methane released during its production. Transforming rice landscapes to more sustainable forms of production is critical to addressing the world’s food security, livelihoods and environmental challenges.
Diane Holdorf, Managing Director of Food and Nature, WBCSD said: “We are proud to be a member of the Sustainable Rice Platform. WBCSD is committed to developing sustainable, equitable, healthy solutions that will transform food systems and scale action across the Asia region”.
Wyn Ellis, Executive Director, SRP said: “We are delighted to formalize our longstanding partnership with WBCSD through the Sustainable Rice Landscapes Initiative, and to welcome WBCSD as a full member of the Sustainable Rice Platform. Rice offers an important entry point for action on a range of Sustainable Development Goals; we are looking forward to extending our cooperation with WBCSD and private sector partners to realize our common vision.”