The Cool Farm Tool | Jon Hillier


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  • Excel based tool Seven input sections: general information, Crop management, sequestration, livestock, field energy, primary processing, transport.Instant results in graph and table format
  • Part of PepsiCo’s ‘50 in 5’ initiative which aims to halve the carbon footprint of agricultural production within five years, including potatoes for Walkers CrispsAlready trialled with over 50 growers-Results shown to be comparable to other studies adding credibility and robustness to the Cool Farm tool.Carbon Trust – performed an LCA study as part of on-pack labeling schemePE International – using Gabi LCA softwareCool Farm Tool roll out – 2010 and 2011 (Euro crops)
  • Leading food businesses and international organizations teamed up to estimate the greenhouse gas footprint of specific farming systems and talk with farmers to figure out how to reduce that footprint as rapidly  and efficiently as possible. Used the CFT to engage with farmers in a consistent way. Collected a large amount of farm-level GHG data from a number of farming systems. Context specific data provides detailed insights and understanding of the variability between different systems and geographies.Image shows some of the locations where the CFT was piloted.
  • A number of companies and groups were involved in this piloting of the toolCovering a range of farming systems across the world
  • In 2012, Unilever, Pepsico, Marks & Spencer, Yara, Tesco, Sustainable Food Lab and the University of Aberdeeen came together to create the Cool Farm Institute, an independent not-for-profit organisation to further develop, promote and distribute the Cool Farm Tool.  The Cool Farm Institute brings together growers with multinational food companies, NGOs, and academics to measure the potential for agricultural practices to mitigate global greenhouse gas emissions.
  • The Cool Farm Tool | Jon Hillier

    1. 1. The Cool Farm Tool Jon Hillier
    2. 2. The context• We know about emissions from agriculture in general• We know about general mitigation options• Not at farm or site level
    3. 3. Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture
    4. 4. Much of retailers GHG emissions are often in the upstream agricultural supply Walkers carbon chain footprint (PepsiCo)What to do about it? Unilever 2008 baseline study across 14 countries
    5. 5. How to mitigate? • Numerous possibilities, e.g. – cropland • management agronomy, nutrient management, tillage/residue management, water management (irrigation, drainage), rice management, agroforestry, set-aside, land-use change – grazing land management/ • pasture improvement, grazing intensity, increased productivity (e.g. fertilization), nutrient management,species introduction (including legumes) – management of organic soils • avoid drainage of wetlands – restoration of degraded lands • erosion control, organic amendments, nutrient amendments – livestock management • improved feeding practices • specific agents and dietary additives • longer term structural and management changes and animal breeding • manure/biosolid management • improved storage and handling • anaerobic digestion - more efficient use as nutrient source – bioenergy energy crops, solid, liquid, • biogas, residuesSmith et al, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B (2008) 363, 789–813
    6. 6. Origins, A We need some software because farmers lack…. utumn 2008 …robust and credible methods for quantifying farm-level GHGs… and …practical tools to identify the most effective emission reduction practices and quantify their effects.Christof Walter, UnileverSustainable Agriculture(now Christof Walterconsulting) Pete Smith, Convening lead author Several IPCC mitigation chapters
    7. 7. Approach• – – – –
    8. 8. The more you know, the better you can estimateComplexity Models Data Requirements Aggregation Notes Level/Uncertainty Limited land use and Typically large spatial management activity data, Suitable for rough units; National scale;Tier 1 IPCC Tier 1 default factors little soil delineation, overviews and where annual resolution; animal numbers limited data is available Tier 1 methods with default Finer spatial and emissions factors replaced by Intermediate temporalTier 2 Can be suitable for region or technology specific spatial/temporal resolution than ones project based scale input data above; can achieve accounting and Hybrid approaches – using Intermediate reasonable inventory roll ups to process or empirical models spatial/temporal uncertainty due to national scale. with region or technology scale input data ‘averaging’ of specific emission factors modelled results. Spatially explicit finescale Suitable for small scale data for model variables; applications where Finest spatial scale detailed land model with representation of use and management parameterization and Process-based models environmental and histories; fine scale soil testing can be done; management variables atTier 3 maps and daily/weekly collection of land use the individual farm level climate data and verified activity data obtained. Level of errors may Highest data requirements; Site scale; may be become overwhelming costly to measure and sub-daily if in sites/projects with variability high; long micrometeorological high variability without Sampling and Measurement sampling intervals and techniques are tight sampling and crediting periods for soil used to estimate statistical design; can be carbon; can have best near continuous most costly to precision gas emission rates. implement
    9. 9. Fit-for-purpose model Modelling trade-offs 6 IPCC, 5 Tier 1 4 IPCC, Uncertainty Tier 2 3 IPCC,Tier 3Error Process-based models, Measurement 2 1 0 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Complexity (effort) Farmers GHG science experts
    10. 10. The Cool Farm Tool• Farm/farmer-focused GHG calculator• 7 input sections; site data, field management, SOC and perennials, livestock, field and site energy use, transport to & from farm• Site and management sensitive estimate of GHG emissions on farm• Decision support: allows exploration of mitigation
    11. 11. “Off-the-shelf” models adapted for the farmer• Fertiliser – Emissions from fertiliser production (Ecoinvent 2007, EFMA 2011, Bhat 1994) – Nitrous oxide emissions from the soil (Bouwman et al 2002)• Pesticides (Audsley 1998, Green 1987)• Land use change, tillage practice (IPCC)• Cropping rotation (IPCC)• Manure management system, composting etc (IPCC)• Crop residue management (IPCC)• Livestock feed, etc. (Lal 2004, Hiller et al 2009)• Fossil fuel use from machinery (mostly ASABE)• Energy use – e.g. electricity with national/regional emissions factors (GHG protocol)
    12. 12. Using the tool
    13. 13. The CFT in use• Part of PepsiCo’s ‘50 in 5’ initiative• Trialled with over 60 farmers in UK and Europe• Robust results comparable to other studies
    14. 14. Sustainable Food Lab• –• –
    15. 15. Cool Farming Options (2010-2012) • A number of companies and sponsors involved: • Pilot and improving – Global application, consistent approach – Context sensitive • Data gathering
    16. 16. Cool Farming Options (2010-2012)● Covering a range of farming systems and geographies:
    17. 17. Case studies,
    18. 18. Decision-support, “what ifs”?
    19. 19. Hillier et al 2012. Which cropland greenhouse gas mitigation options give thegreatest benefits in different world regions? Global Change Biology 18(6) 1880–1894
    20. 20. The Cool Farm InstituteThe Cool Farm Institute is an independent not-for-profitorganisation to help farmers and those businesses theysupply make informed on-farm decision to reduce theirenvironmental impact.
    21. 21. Knowledge Exchange and Shared Learning• – – – • –
    22. 22. Summary• End-user led• Farm focused and practical• Focal point for growing user/developer/stakeholder communities• Goal is shared learning
    23. 23. Acknowledgements• CFI: – Christof Walter (Unilever) – Daniella Malin (Sustainable Food Lab) – Hal Hamilton (Sustainable Food Lab) – Mark Pettigrew (PepsiCo) – Carmel McQuaid (Marks & Spencer) – Andrew Yeo (Tesco) – Frank Brentrup (Yara) – Richard Heathcote (Heineken) – Christian Pallière (Fertilizers Europe) – Simon Miller and others (Best Foot Forward)• University of Aberdeen – NERC, Knowledge exchange fellowship scheme