Curtis Packaging - After 10 years, the 5.4 - acre forest sequestered over 500 MT CO2e.
The initial discussions on a joint project began with Don Droppo of Curtis Packaging.
Curtis Packaging Co. is an environmentally sensitive company taking steps to minimize its impact on the environment. In October 2007, Curtis Packaging became the first 100% carbon neutral printing and packaging company in North America. Curtis Packaging partnered with Reforest the Tropics, Inc. (RTT) to establish a five-acre carbon-offset forest.
The picture below shows RTT staff discussing the Curtis project with the farmer, his family, RTT staff and visitors.
The Mixture of Species and Sustainability of the Curtis Forest
RTT uses mixed-species models of forests for reasons of sustainability. Significant mitigation of climate change using farm forests will require hundreds of thousands of acres of plantings. If we planted the traditional monocultures of a single species, they would possibly eventually be susceptible to insects and diseases. If we use a mixture of species, mimicking the mixtures of natural forests, we might lose one species, but the stand would regenerate maintaining its role of long-term CO2e sequestration. There are 7 species of trees in the Curtis forest. The percentages are 41% Klinkii, 18% gallinazo, 10.1% pilon, 10% deglupta hybrid, 9.8% chancho, 5.6% mahogany, and 4.8% cedar.
The Klinkii is for long-term CO2 storage. The gallinazo, deglupta and chancho are for early thinnings for farmer income because they grow much faster. The mahogany and cedar produce high value wood for future farmer income as we strive towards a 100+ year model. Replanting shade-tolerant species under the original forest will be necessary to maintain stand density, generate farmer income, and reach our goal of 2,000 tCO2/ha by 50 years and 100+ years of storage.
Definitions 1 ha = 1 hectare = 2.471 acres; tCO2e = metric tonnes of CO2equivalent stored in the form of wood; Carbon (C) content of forest = green stem volume * 1.5 for roots and branches * species basic density * 0.5 carbon content of wood; CO2 content = C in forest / 0.273.
Shown to the left is the forest on February 27, 2018. By 10 years of age, it captured 501 tCO2e so far towards a goal of 2,000 tCO2e in the first 25-year contract.
Shown below is the five-acre pasture in the Las Delicias Farm sponsored by Curtis Packaging for conversion into a carbon-offset forest. The photo was taken in August, 2007, just before planting began. The seasonally dry pond in the center of the photo will form part of the Curtis wildlife enhancement area. The photo shows that, prior to RTT’s reforestation efforts, very little carbon was sequestered on the site. As for all of RTT’s projects, the Curtis Packaging forest has “additionality,” i.e., the carbon sequestration via reforestation is additional to what would have occurred without RTT’s efforts.