• OCT Plants 1,000 Trees and Neutralizes 167 Tons of Carbon

    DATE: 04/25/2017

    Published by: Norberto Odebrecht Foundation

    Did you know that our daily activities either directly or indirectly release carbon, and consequently, worsen global warming? The initiative of an institution supported by the Odebrecht Foundation has been doing its part


    If your diet includes meat, it would be necessary to plant two trees in one year to neutralize what your food choices represent in terms of carbon emissions into the atmosphere – considering the entire food production chain, from raising the animals to their slaughter and the transport of the product to the supermarket.


    And if you travel 10 km per day by car, from home to work, in a fuel-efficient gas powered vehicle? Well, then your annual “debt” is higher: you would need to plant four trees by the end of the year to pay off your debt to the planet.


    It is precisely thinking of this cause and effect relationship that many companies and organizations have literally gotten “down to earth” to neutralize the impact of their economic activities. Anyone familiar with the property of family farmer Eliseu de Oliveira, located in the Bahia municipality of Ibirapitanga, knows what we are talking about. It was there that 1,000 native Atlantic Forest tree seedlings were planted by the Land Conservation Organization (OCT), an institution that is part of the Odebrecht Foundation‘s  Program for Development and Growth Integrated with Sustainability (PDCIS).


    The action, which will make it possible to recover a water source, began to take shape in October 2016, when the Odebrecht Group established a partnership with the foundation to finance the neutralization of 167 tons of carbon released during the ceremony for the 8th Odebrecht Award for Sustainable Development, held in November 2016 at the Museum of Tomorrow in Rio de Janeiro.


    “If there is no renegotiation by institutions focused on connecting interests for the common good, we may have a hard time adapting to the effects of climate change,” stated Volney Fernandes, Executive Director of OCT. “Even without the requirement to compensate the emissions from this event, the attitude reveals Odebrecht’s commitment to the topic,” he said.


    Fernandes reinforces that the benefits generated at Oliveira’s property go far beyond new trees: at the same time, there is also the training of family farmers, who receive payment for the environmental service and support with the environmental regulation of their properties. They also gain access to improvements in basic sanitation.


    The impacts will soon be visible in nature too. “The water source will only be fully covered after three years,” explained Fernandes. “However, within 12 months, we’ll already see a significant change in the vegetation.”



    Ivete’s Concert


    Anyone who believes that the OCT initiative is temporary has it wrong. With the support of the foundation, OCT has been working since 2012 and has already neutralized over 2,300 tons of carbon and planted more than 200,000 native Atlantic Forest trees as part of forest restorations, making it possible to sell 40,000 tons of carbon.


    This figure includes actions at major events, such as the filming of Brazilian singer Ivete Sangalo’s DVD in 2013 at the Fonte Nova Arena in Salvador, which allowed for the neutralization of 50 tons of CO2 with the planting of approximately 300 seedlings as part of a restoration project in Bahia.


    In 2014, Odebrecht Oil & Gas neutralized part of the activities of its offices in Macaé and Itajaí, in Rio de Janeiro, restoring three water sources and planting a total of 3,875 trees. That same year, the Greenhouse Gases (GHG) released during the Odebrecht S.A. Annual Meeting were also compensated.



    Pole Position


    The Odebrecht Group has also been working on other fronts to help mitigate its environmental impacts. At Odebrecht Agroindustrial, a partnership established in 2016 with Aston Martin Racing allowed the environment to once again emerge in the “pole position.”


    Based on the mathematics involving the sugarcane processing operations and capture of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere due to the recovery of the areas degraded by the reed beds, Agro’s annual balance is positive – 479,000 t of CO2eq.


    Through an agreement with Aston, a small portion of this balance is used to neutralize the racing team’s CO2 emissions (808 t of CO2eq during the 2015 season), compensating the impacts caused by the races during the course of a season.

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