Field Projects

Carbon Offsets in Coffee Farms in Chiapas

The main objective of this project is to protect the tropical forest through the emission of carbon credits that will be used to offset the emissions generated by the production of coffee farms. Trees and plants can capture carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, and feed on it to grow. This project consists of working with the coffee farms to increase the amount of carbon captured by their plant population. This includes the management and conservation of about 150 hectares of forest.

Basic information

  • Municipality of Tapachula, Chiapas
  • Production of more than 5,000 carbon credits per year certified by CAR
  • Commitment by forest owner to protect the ecosystem for at least 100 years
  • Survey of approximately 210 monitoring sites
  • 50 people working on the project

Project Overview

The different stages of the project are the following: 1) Design of the project, 2) Survey of monitoring sites, 3) Preparation of the forest carbon inventory, 4) Preparation of the manual of species of the area, 5) Verification by an accredited body , 6) Issuance of carbon offsets' certificates, 7) Constant monitoring, reporting and verification throughout the years, 8) Permanent restoration work in the jungle.

Details

Problems of the area

Traditionally, this region has had coffee plantations. Until now, the original cover of the forests that we have decided to conserve has been respected. However, there are pressures to increase planting to the detriment of the carbon stocks of the forest. This would damage the ecosystem with harmful repercussions for both the fauna and flora of the area.

Size and magnitude of the project

The total area of ​​the project is 900 hectares and the area intervened is 180 hectares.

Natural conditions

This ecosystem is characterized by cloud mountain forest and tropical forest. Thanks to the development of a species identification manual, we have recognized more than 200 species of vascular plants distributed in 120 genera and 59 botanical families. Among the wildlife sightings with camera trapping we put in place are Puma concolor, Dasypus Novemcynctus, Coragys atratus, Spilogale angustifrons, Crotalus aquilus.

Training

Working safely is a priority, and a major challenge to meet when managing field operations. In the event that our rigorous safety protocols fail to prevent an accident, we train all our crew leaders in DC3-certified first aid, as well as the knowledge and equipment necessary to handle poisonous snake bites in the field. We also  carry out training on the emission of carbon credits, survey of forest inventory and continuous reforestation work.

Benefits

Among the most notable environmental benefits is the protection and restoration of an ecosystem that is home to a significant number of flora and fauna species whose habitat is threatened. We believe that one of the best tools we have in the fight against the climate crisis is soil carbon sequestration, and we can take advantage of opportunities with commercial agroforestry operations, such as coffee plantations. It is clear that it is possible to implement nature-based solutions without affecting income or yields, increasing the resilience of our economy and society.

How do you measure carbon in trees?

Trees consume carbon dioxide (CO2) through photosynthesis. Oxygen (O2) is returned to the atmosphere, and carbon (C) becomes part of the wood in the tree. About half the weight of each tree is carbon that was in the atmosphere and is now in a trunk. What we do is establish monitoring sites in the forest; approximately 100. At each monitoring site the diameters and heights of all trees are measured. This allows us to know, with an error of less than 7%, the amount of carbon in the entire reserve. This process is also audited by a scientific verifier who certifies the veracity of Toroto's work.