No Conversion of Natural Ecosystems target

The No Conversion of Natural Ecosystems target addresses land use change. Companies setting this target will avoid all further conversion of lands that were considered to be natural in 2020 after a target year that will vary between 2025 and 2030, depending on the context.

Companies setting this target will avoid all further conversion of lands that were considered to be natural.

To achieve this target, you will eliminate all new conversion of natural ecosystems from your (direct operations and upstream) activities that occur after a certain target year, and you will remediate all accrued conversion of natural ecosystems that occurred between 2020 and this target year. Target years vary between 2025 and 2030, depending on the ecological importance of each natural area, the value chain segment, and the type of commodity you are sourcing.

SBTN considers natural lands as those areas where ecological functions remained equal or similar enough to what would be expected in a relatively undisturbed ecosystem as of 2020. This includes, among other things, secondary forests and semi-natural grazing landscapes. By definition, non-natural lands include all other areas where ecological functions have been considerably altered, including mono-crop agricultural landscapes, forest plantations, and urban areas.

SBTN has published a Natural Lands Map, which combines multiple sources of spatial information to identify which lands meet these criteria. The map will also include a layer indicating conversion hotspots, which have earlier target years given their ecological importance. You will use this map both to identify lands where conversion post-target year is not allowed, and to calculate your accrued conversion by the target year (including your baseline conversion on the year you set your targets).

The methods include specific guidance on how to calculate conversion including options to use statistical data for the assessment, given the challenges of acquiring detailed spatial information for your value chains. The requirements vary depending on the value chain segments and for cases where you source directly or indirectly from your suppliers (e.g., from first points of aggregation in the value chain or downstream from those). In certain cases, such as when previous deforestation or no-conversion commitments existed in specific geographies (e.g., Brazil’s soy moratorium), you will need to refer to alternative datasets, with baselines earlier than 2020, to assess your conversion.

You will have the time between the moment you submit your targets and the target year to adjust your practices to halt all post-target year conversion. Any conversion of natural lands for which you are responsible past the target year will end your compliance with the target and your right to any claims associated with it.

We will release additional guidance to help you measure and achieve remediation. Given the considerable costs and timelines needed to return ecosystems to a functional natural state, we strongly advise you to take immediate action to halt conversion as soon as possible, rather than waiting until the target year.

Help and resources

Go back to Step 3: Measure, Set, & Disclose Land targets