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Greenhouse Gas Emissions Made Simple with the new Grow Asia Counter
 
Singapore, 16 November 2016 – Grow Asia, a multi-stakeholder partnership platform that catalyzes action on inclusive agricultural development in South East Asia, today announced the launch of the Grow Asia Counter (the Counter), a greenhouse gas emissions tool that enables users to easily calculate and report the environmental impact of their farm management practices.

Greenhouse gas levels are an important indicator of environmental sustainability, and agriculture currently generates around a fifth of the world's emissions[1]. One of Grow Asia’s goals is to improve environmental sustainability in smallholder farms by 20% by 2020, and the Counter is designed to facilitate the monitoring of projects that are being implemented with the aim of achieving this goal.

Alison Eskesen, Director for Knowledge and Innovation, Grow Asia said: “In our conversations with our partners, we realize that measuring and evaluating the environmental impact of their value chain projects in a way that is easy and scientifically rigorous has been a challenge.

“The Grow Asia Counter is a highly-effective and easy-to-use tool that can help estimate the greenhouse gas emissions from our partners’ key crop activities. It is part of a suite of innovative resources Grow Asia is developing to equip our partners with the necessary tools that can help them measure progress toward achieving their goals in improving productivity, profitability and environmental sustainability.”

Through a series of questions, the Counter quickly calculates the impact of different farm management practices, such as soil management, use of agrochemicals and fossil fuels, on greenhouse gas emissions. Users can view their current emission levels and compare their projects to alternative practices to explore how they can reduce their emissions and improve their environmental sustainability. By harnessing the power of data, field project managers can report on the performance of their value chain projects over time and make appropriate decisions based on their project evaluations.

The Counter is currently tailored for value chain projects in specific crops – cocoa, coffee, corn, rice, potatoes, tea, vegetables and horticulture – in the five countries where Grow Asia partnerships exist, namely Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines and Vietnam. While initially designed to meet the specific needs of Grow Asia partners, the Counter is available for the public to access and its application will eventually be extended to other countries in South East Asia.

The Counter can be accessed at growasia.org/counter. Users wishing to learn more about the Counter can view the User Manual, which includes a checklist of information required, and the Methodology, which elaborates on the underlying science and calculations.

 



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By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

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