The agricultural sector emits around six billion tonnes of Greenhouse Gasses (GHGs) in 2011 or about 13% of total global emissions. The agricultural sector is the world’s largest emitter, after the energy sector. (Russell, 2014). According to a report conducted by the Dutch organisation OneFarm, vertical farming (fully circular) has the opportunity to reduce these CO2 outputs by 70%, over agricultural methods.
The report, conducted by the Dutch organisation OneFarm, sets out a comparative life cycle assessment in five different agricultural systems from farm to distribution center for lettuce production. It demonstrates the potential of green vertical farming in mitigation and resilience of food production focusing on the CO2 emissions and resource use efficiency of different agricultural methods: green vertical farming, conventional vertical farming, advanced greenhouse, conventional greenhouse and open field agriculture.
The emission reduction from energy use improvements, renewable energy sources and full recycling of waste energy is at the core of the sustainable development solution in vertical farming. This represents up to 98% of total emission reductions to around 160 kg CO2eq for each ton of harvested lettuce as compared to 540 kg CO2eq for open field agriculture.
OneFarm is a Dutch based organization focused on providing affordable fresh healthy food and plant pharmaceuticals in a sustainable way to local communities and municipalities globally to mitigate the upcoming food crisis. To this end OneFarm conducts research and implements large scale vertical farms together with local partners to ensure food security for all parts of the population. Its long-term focus is on the protein transition and growing food through sustainable technologies and methods.