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Minami-Alps city sells "Carbon offset tomatoes" in greater Tokyo area

Last modified July 21, 2011 09:23

Minami-Alps City, Yamanashi Prefecture, started test marketing "carbon offset tomatoes" on February 25, 2011, as a project adopted by the Japanese Ministry of the Environment under its Model Project Plan for Carbon Offsets.

 

Minami-Alps City, Yamanashi Prefecture, started test marketing "carbon offset tomatoes" on February 25, 2011, as a project adopted by the Japanese Ministry of the Environment under its Model Project Plan for Carbon Offsets.

Minami-Alps purchased through a credit agency 25 tons of carbon offset credits (J-VER) that were produced in an initiative taken by Kochi Prefecture for the utilization of wood biomass. The city allocated 5 kilograms of offset credits per tomato--called "House Tomato (Momotaro)" because they were grown in a greenhouse--and sold 5,000 tomatoes with the Carbon Offset Certification Label to certify that they meet the Ministry's environmental quality standards.

The average person in Japan is responsible for 2,070 kilograms of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions a year, or about 5.67 kg a day. A consumer who purchases one carbon offset tomato can thus offset most of his or her emissions (5 kg) in a single day.

When cultivating tomatoes, the city is also reducing CO2 emissions by using wood pellets (wood biomass) to heat the greenhouses instead of fossil fuels like fuel oil.

Source: Japan for Sustainability

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