Since 2007, we have offset each air mile of our goods transport as well as all our business trips. We also offset the CO2 emissions from deliveries by our online store Coop@home. To do this, within our value chains and working with the WWF, we are devising projects according to the Gold standard, the most stringent existing standard for climate protection projects. As well as protecting the climate, these projects must also benefit the local population. The Coop Sustainability Fund carefully finances selected offsetting projects, providing around 2 million Swiss francs a year.
To give one example, the construction of biogas plants in one of our rice growing areas in India reduces CO2 emissions by around 5 tonnes per plant and per year. The provision of efficient ovens in our rose-growing region in Kenya has also helped reduce CO2 emissions (Action no. 256). Thanks to the ovens, the local people need to collect and burn less firewood, cutting firewood consumption in half. The lessening of harmful smoke indoors also has a positive impact on the health of the occupants.
In the southern Chinese province of Sichuan, we have developed a similar project and, in partnership with the WWF, introduced ovens which reduce wood consumption by half (Action no. 84). This enables us to save 224 hectares of forest each year, preserving it for the Giant Panda. Additionally, environmental impact is lessened and CO2 emissions reduced.