The Cool Farm Institute and Gold Standard have joined to implement Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) systems. By using the simple online Cool Smart Tool, farmers can now easily calculate the positive impact on emissions related to their improved farming techniques. More importantly, they can earn rewards through credits by achieving lower emissions. This effort is expected to stimulate smallholder farmer involvement and accelerate the shift towards CSA and sustainable practices.
The tool is hosted by the Cool Farm Institute and was originally developed by Unilever and the University of Aberdeen to help producers measure and understand the implications of farming greenhouse gas emissions. Its supporters are large corporations who have an interest in measuring and improving the production in their own supply chains, while helping their farmers to operate with more sustainable practices.
How it Works
The Cool Farm Tool allows farmers to access the tool online and enter specific parameters such as the farm and field area, planted crops, the fertilizer regime and the use of machinery, amongst others, that are the base for the emission calculations. They then receive an easy-to-understand summary indication about the emissions in their farms, both on a hectare level as well as per production unit.
How the Tool Helps Farmers
“Farmers will be able to evaluate not only which practices are more efficient and more climate smart than others, they can directly reward their efforts by obtaining Gold Standard carbon credits,” says Pieter van Midwoud, Business Director of Gold Standard Land Use & Forests. In fact, the Cool Farm Institute and the Gold Standard Foundation have agreed through an MoU to align their requirements to make the Cool Farm Tool eligible as a carbon accounting methodology.
This cooperation is expected to propel Climate Smart Agriculture forward. The Cool Farm Tool is the only fully operational tool that currently works to quantify emissions and emission reductions in a quick and easy-to-use way. With the combination of generating Gold Standard credits on an easily scalable farm-to-farm level, the transition to more sustainable practices in Climate Smart Agriculture will become measurable and affordable.
“This is absolutely critical, because agriculture makes such an enormous contribution to climate change,” says Moriz Vohrer, Technical Director of Gold Standard Land Use & Forests. “Now we have a tool that can reflect the complex reality the farmers work in.”
Once the technical details for the alignment of the Cool Farm Tool with the methodologies of the Gold Standard have been completed, detailed instructions about how and when the combined tool can be used will be advertised though Gold Standard’s communication channels. Those interested can access a video tutorial on how to use to tool or get additional information at the Cool Farm Tool website.