Carbon Management Engineering

Coffee Farms

Agricultural activities are a major source of emissions of powerful greenhouse gases, especially nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4). Under international standards, Toroto carried out the identification and measurement of both direct and indirect emission sources for four coffee farms on more than 700 hectares.

Basic information

  • Coffee production in 729 hectares
  • Measurement and reporting adhered to international protocols
  • Project located in Chiapas, México
  • Quantification of CO2, CH4 and N2O in the inventory
  • 2.38 kgCO2e / kg of parchment coffee

Project Overview

In September 2020, Toroto measured what is known as the carbon footprint baseline of four coffee farms. This process consists of measuring greenhouse gas emissions that occurred in a certain period in order to be able to make decisions and establish goals for environmental performance and climate commitment. To build the emissions inventory, it was necessary to identify both the sources of mechanical emissions (combustion in vehicles, use of gas or electricity consumption), as well as non-mechanical ones (due to the application of fertilizers or due to the decomposition of organic matter) . Finally, depending on the production of parchment coffee that the farms have, it was measured how much is the carbon footprint for each kilogram of coffee that is produced.

Details

Why is it important to measure emissions from agricultural activities such as coffee production?

On the one hand, measuring greenhouse gas emissions allows companies to know the environmental impact of their activities. This is a way for companies to identify both risks and opportunities, but also to compare environmental performance over time and within the industry. On the other hand, society increasingly demands that companies carry out environmental efforts and that they have evidence of transparency, such as an emissions report.

What international protocols do the inventory and the emissions report adhere to?

From project planning to delivery of results, the measurement and reporting process adhered to the Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard, as well as to the Agricultural Guidance of the GHG Protocol. In this way, the inventory included scope one, two and three emissions, as well as emissions due to biomass burning.

How is the baseline inventory determined?

In accordance with the provisions of the Agricultural Guidance of the GHG Protocol, the base year must be determined from the average of the emissions generated over three consecutive years, due to the climate variabilities from which agricultural activities may suffer.

What are the main sources of emissions?

Being an agricultural activity, the main sources of emissions for coffee production on farms were the decomposition of organic matter, the treatment of wastewater from the production process, the application of fertilizers and the use of fossil fuels in the different operations and facilities of the farms. By their nature, these activities release significant amounts of CO2, CH4 and N2O, the last two being greenhouse gases with high global warming potentials.

What can Toroto do to reduce emissions from agricultural activities such as coffee production?

Reducing the carbon footprint is as important as offsetting it. We have different solutions for the reduction of emissions, which for a case such as coffee farms, may consist of simple activities such as adequate composting or the use of clean energy. Additionally, Toroto develops carbon capture projects that can certify the reduction of the carbon footprint of agricultural activities such as coffee production.