Commitment to Renewing Life
One of the main threats to biodiversity loss in Brazil and worldwide is habitat fragmentation. This phenomenon occurs when a continuous natural area of environmental relevance is subdivided into smaller areas with no connection to each other. This happens as a result of changes in land use and occupation caused mainly by human actions.
Fragmentation alters the ecological interactions in the landscape and isolates species, resulting in a reduction of genetic variability and reproductive success - which can contribute to their extinction - in addition to interfering with the loss of resilience of the territories to climate changes and the provision of ecosystem services, among other adverse effects.
Suzano's forestry operations cover approximately 2.4 million hectares. Therefore, we understand that it is our role to contribute to the connection of these fragments in order to preserve the biodiversity of the biomes in which we are present and mitigate the risk of species extinction.
Given Suzano's entire land area and influence, and the understanding that nature does not recognize boundaries between properties, the commitment's challenge considers priority areas for biodiversity conservation in Brazil in the Cerrado, Atlantic Forest and Amazon biomes. The Commitment's scope includes natural areas of forests and other types of fragmented native vegetation that need to be connected and its respective biodiversity corridors between them, both inside and outside the company's operations, in partnership with different stakeholders.
To meet this target, Suzano is focusing on the Connect, Engage and Protect pillars defined for the Commitment. Based on these pillars, the company will act strategically along six lines: implement biodiversity corridors at the landscape scale; implement biodiverse production models; establish business models that generate shared value; alleviate anthropic pressures on biodiversity; conserve populations of endangered primates and palm trees; and create networks of Conservation Units.
Based on the executive project prepared by the Ecological Research Institute (IPÊ), 500 thousand hectares of native vegetation fragments were mapped and the areas for the implementation of restoration and biodiversity models in productive areas were defined for action along the corridors by 2030. A risk analysis process was conducted to assess feasibility and goal achievement within the estimated timeframe, considering operations on Suzano's farms as well as areas belonging to rural landowners located along the corridors. Suzano already has a controlled matrix of environmental aspects and impacts within its operations. These operations are expected to have positive impacts on biodiversity by converting land use to natural areas and implementing production models that are more favorable to biodiversity. To this end, an annual plan of implementation must be followed to increase connectivity and fully achieve the goal.
Over the year 2022, we implemented 179.41 hectares (ha) of restoration in Suzano's protected areas within the three ecological corridors, 73.10 ha of which were in the Amazon biome, 52.56 ha in the Cerrado biome, and 53.74 ha in the Atlantic Forest biome. We also implemented 93.14 ha of biodiverse models in Suzano's eucalyptus production areas in southern Bahia, an area belonging to the Atlantic Forest corridor. In 2022, seven models were designed involving the intercropping of eucalyptus with other crops and species, totaling two models proposed with Agroforestry Systems (SAFs), one agroforestry-pastoral model, and four natural regeneration models.
In another action front, we defined the key or priority primate and palm species that will be monitored along the three corridors. The primate species selected were cuxiú-preto (Chiropotes satanas) for the Amazon corridor, bugio-marrom (Alouatta guariba guariba) for the Atlantic Forest corridor, and macaco-prego (Sapajus cay) for the Cerrado corridor. The palm species selected for each corridor were mumbaca (Astrocaryum gynacanthum) for the Amazon, maria-rosa (Syagrus macrocarpa) and juçara (Euterpe edulis) for the Atlantic Forest, and acumã (Syagrus flexuosa) for the Cerrado. The initiative, associated to the action line "Conserve populations of endangered primates and palm trees", takes into consideration the importance and potential for productive and economic biodiversification and, consequently, its potential for sustainable productive management, in the case of palm trees.
In the line of "Establishing business models that generate shared value", we structured a community business to provide restoration services in the Atlantic Forest corridor, in the state of Espírito Santo, and developed an engagement plan with the rural producers mapped along the corridors. Finally, regarding the action line "Creating networks of protected areas", we analyzed the legal aspects related to the creation of protected areas in the corridor territory at the federal, state and municipal levels.
For 2023, our goal is to implement corridor sections with the potential to connect 50,000 hectares of fragments. To this end, we will implement management areas with biodiverse¹ models in eucalyptus plantations and ecological restoration on Suzano and neighboring properties, as planned and recommended in the 2023 planning process that is currently under development. Since the restorations shall begin outside Suzano's properties, we will put into practice the engagement plan with the landowners mapped along the corridors.
We will also begin to monitor the populations of primate and palm species of interest present in the connected fragments, train specialized surveillance teams, who will begin patrols in an effort to reduce environmental incidents, and map the risk of fires in the corridors and source fragments.
Increase water availability in all the critical watersheds¹ in Suzano's areas of operation by 2030 and reduce by 15% the water captured in our industrial operations...
Connect half a million hectares of priority areas for biodiversity conservation in the Cerrado, Atlantic Forest, and Amazon.
Make available 10 million tons of renewable-source products that can replace plastic and other petroleum-based products by 2030.
Remove 40 million tons of carbon from the atmosphere by 2025; Reduce by 15% the intensity of the Greenhouse Gas emissions of scopes 1 and 2, per ton of production...