Pāmu has established an independent sustainability panel to bolster its commitment to sustainable farming (toitū kaimahi pāmu).
“The panel’s scope is to consider all relevant sustainability matters,” Pāmu chief executive Mark Leslie said.
“However, given the impact of climate change and the urgent need to find solutions to reduce on-farm emissions while building resilience to adapt to climate changes, the panel’s major focus will initially be in these areas.
“We envisage the panel as a critical friend who will constructively challenge Pāmu while providing new information, insights and points of view,” he said.
Pāmu’s commitment involves linking future bank loans to sustainability goals including year-on-year emission (tukuwaro) reductions, working with partners on farm emissions reduction projects, methane reduction trials, lowering its environmental footprint through organic dairy and nitrogen reduction, land use change through horticulture and integrating trees into the landscape on marginal farming land.
The panel’s formation comes at a critical time for Pāmu and the wider farming sector, including Pāmu’s establishment of an Emissions Reduction Plan that forms part of the government’s overall Climate Change Response announced earlier this year.
The panel takes over the work of the company’s Environmental Reference Group and Visionary Vets One Health Group, which have been disbanded.
The panel’s six members include four from outside Pāmu: Kate Beddoe, chief sustainability and risk officer at Silver Fern Farms; Carolyn Mortland, who is on Zespri’s sustainability advisory board and a former director of global sustainability at Fonterra; Richard Gordon, former chief executive of Manaaki Whenua – Landcare Research; and Luke Harrington, a climate scientist and lecturer at Waikato University.
The other two members are Pāmu directors Desiree Mahy and Belinda Story, who will chair the panel.
The panel, which met for the first time last month, will report to the board on a periodic basis to ensure the board has an independent view of the work the company is doing.
The panel will be supported by Pāmu chief sustainability and risk officer Annabel Davies as well as Leslie.