Ansell Limited launched an agroforestry project in July 2017 with The Carbon Consulting Company (CCC) to create a biodiversity corridor that would connect Haycock and Dunawala - two separate and protected rainforests in the southern region of Sri Lanka. Referred to as the "Ansell Bio-link", it is a carbon mitigation reforestation project with multiple ecological and livelihood-improving outcomes that directly contribute towards achieving 9 out of the 17 United Nations' (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), namely No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health & Well-being, Quality Education, Gender Equality, Clean Water & Sanitation, Economic Growth, Climate Action and Life on Land. It is also Sri Lanka’s first Carbon Insetting project and is validated and certified under the ISO 14064-2:2006 Standard.
In the first year of the project, 2,000 trees were planted across the Neluwa - Mandalapura area, and 1,000 trees have been planted every year since. As per an agreed 10-year project commitment, a total of 5000 saplings has been distributed and planted among 81 farmer families to date. The project provides native and endemic rainforest trees along with cash crops to farmlands.
As the challenges of Climate Change and environmental degradation become evident, many leading corporations are identifying both the risks and opportunities associated with them and evolving their business models accordingly. In addition to mitigating the broader issue of Climate Change, the project helps to;
(1) Conserve remaining rainforests by providing buffer zones and a safe corridor between the two protected forest patches to help reduce threats to local biodiversity and wildlife from adjacent human communities; and
(2) Improve the livelihoods of local smallholder farmers and their communities.
The Ansell Bio-link Project demonstrates the ongoing commitment of Ansell Limited towards environmental and social responsibility. As a global leader in protection solutions, it further aligns its organisational objectives by playing a key role in the protection of local and endemic biodiversity in a country with current operations.