Yara CEO and President Jørgen Ole Haslestad attended the annual World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos and urged global political and business leaders to step up the pace towards green growth.
“In our partnerships, we see the potential for realizing the New Vision for Agriculture, producing more food using less natural resources. However, I urge everyone to identify further actions. We have the knowledge – the farmers provide the manpower – but how do we spread modern and sustainable practices to achieve green growth? There is a huge need to step up the pace," he said.
Around 3,000 leaders gathered at the WEF in Davos, Switzerland, in January 2013. Agriculture was one of the hot topics, since 9 billion people will need to be fed by 2050 and demand for agricultural products is expected to double.
“Agriculture accounts for 70% of water use and up to 30% of greenhouse gas emissions. Therefore, land use, biodiversity, water management and rural development are key areas where agriculture plays a vital role.”
Partnerships and action to achieve green growth
The Yara CEO believes that in order to achieve sustained green growth an integrated approach to global challenges is needed, as well as engaging leadership and working through partnerships.
Yara is engaged in several public-private partnerships (PPPs) and has taken concrete actions to improve food security and sustainable farming.
“Yara pursues green growth at multiple levels, working through partnerships. In Doha, we and partners unveiled the Sahara Forest Project: an innovative approach to utilizing CO2, fertilizer, solar power and sea water to grow vegetables and algae in the desert,” he said. “In Tanzania, the Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT) partnership includes green growth as an additional layer and we conduct research in collaboration with Syngenta and two universities, to define how modern farm practices impact the environment, climate change and the farmers’ economy.”
During the WEF 2013 Yara attended the Leadership Council meeting where collaboration for sustainable investment in African agriculture was discussed. Yara also hosted – together with Syngenta - a successful Grow Africa dinner attended by several ministers and business leaders.
The Grow Africa partnership is a platform for investment and growth that aims to catalyze the private sector investments needed to accelerate sustainable agricultural growth in Africa. Yara is one of the members of the Grow Africa Task Force and has a co-chair position.
“Grow Africa has emerged as a powerful African force, with the G8’s New Alliance doubling the financial muscle available for targeted growth investments into African agriculture, “ said Yara CEO Jørgen Haslestad. “SAGCOT has prospered under President Jakaya Kikwete’s leadership – and we are pleased to see how the African Union utilizes this and similar experiences in the Grow Africa Partnership.”
Yara CEO Jørgen Haslestad also joined the dialogue on “A New vision for Agriculture: accelerating impact” and chaired a panel discussion at “Transforming Investment flows: Green Growth Action Alliance”. The Green Growth Action Alliance is a public-private partnership initiative aiming to address the shortfall in green infrastructure investment. Yara is one of 48 members.