Bracell has launched a major breaking conservation commitment which will have a positive impact on the protection of native vegetation and biodiversity in Brazil. The Bracell ‘One to One’ commitment will see the company conserve and protect one hectare of native land for every hectare of plantation.
Bracell has committed to achieving this target by 2025. The company ratio of conserved areas to plantations is currently 0.56 and it has made an initial investment of R$12m (US$2.3m) to support its new commitment.
In addition to conserving existing native areas in Bracell’s production areas, the commitment will also support conservation in public areas and the recovery of degraded areas through partnerships with governments and other institutions. It will also work to prevent and fight forest fires, deforestation and the theft of native wood, alongside the prevention of illegal hunting and capture of wild animals.
Marcio Nappo, Vice president of Sustainability and Corporate Communications, Bracell, said: “This is an unprecedented initiative because it expands our area of activity in the conservation of biodiversity beyond our areas of operation. We have adopted this commitment on a permanent basis, so if we increase the areas of our eucalyptus plantations after 2025, the total number of conserved areas will also be increased to maintain our focus on achieving the target”.
João Augusti, Environment and Certifications Manager, Bracell, said: “Environmental preservation is part of Bracell’s essence. Eucalyptus plantations interspersed with native vegetation form forest mosaics that provide environmental benefits for our plantations and for biodiversity. Also, a healthy environment provides benefits for society as a whole”.
Another central element in Bracell’s strategy to protect biodiversity is the constitution of Private Natural Heritage Reserves (RPPNs). In these conservation areas of private domain, only scientific research, environmental education and tourist visitor activities are allowed.
Bracell has four RPPNs, which are areas with fully protected native vegetation, fauna and flora. Among these, the Lontra RPPN has been designated as an Advanced Biosphere Reserve of the Atlantic Forest by UNESCO and is home to hundreds of species of wild fauna and flora, many of them rare and/or threatened by extinction.
Several partnerships have already been signed to achieve the ‘One-to-One’ goal. Bracell has signed an agreement with the São Paulo Forest Foundation to sponsor protection efforts across 66,000 hectares of native forests, including relevant parts of the Atlantic Forest and Cerrado Paulista areas.
The company has also signed a cooperation agreement with the Bahia Secretariat for the Environment (Sema) to carry out joint actions aimed at protecting biodiversity in Atlantic Forest Conservation Units (UCs) in the state, such as the Subaé Canyons and the Subaúma river basin. The goal is to work in partnerships that contribute to the conservation and maintenance of UCs and safeguard the natural heritage, and protect rare and endangered species of fauna and flora, and water resources, guaranteed by forest formations.
The company also signed a partnership with the SOS Atlantic Forest Foundation through which it will support actions to promote the restoration of the Atlantic Forest in Permanent Preservation Areas (APP) and Legal Reserve areas, contributing to the formation of ecological corridors, the connection of remaining fragments of forest areas and the preservation of water resources.
In addition, Bracell, which since 2021 has been a member of the Brazilian Business Council for Sustainable Development (CEBDS), joined in April the nine goals of the Brazilian Business Commitment to Biodiversity, an initiative aligned with its sustainability strategy and aimed at reinforcing the adoption of good practices for the protection of biodiversity.
“All these signed actions and partnerships are among the first steps we are taking towards our goal. The company will review this commitment and its results annually, which will be verified by an independent audit and reported publicly,” said Nappo.
“Our ‘One-to One’ commitment is an important milestone in our sustainability strategy and is fully aligned with our company values. Our operations are guided by our philosophy that everything we do must be good for the country, the climate, communities and customers, and only then will it be good for our company”, he added.