In 2017, the Board of Directors of Officetotal decided to transform the company into an environmentally friendly entity. We assumed a major goal to reduce our environmental footprint to zero by 2020.
The first step was the reforestation of 180,000 square meters in the Peneda-Gerês mountains.
This project will provide two opportunities: help us achieve our major goal and provide a source of income for villagers near the site. The trees planted will sequester carbon and contribute to reducing our ecological footprint. Secondly, the trees will be a source of income for villagers once the fruit has been picked and sold by the local community.
Before taking a final decision on the tree species best suited to the terrain, several points were analysed. This analysis considered the ecological microclimate, ability to resist fires, carbon sequester capacity and fruit generation. We believe it is essential that the local community be involved in the project so that they can directly benefit from it. The villagers’ commitment to the project will be enhanced through it being an economic resource. After conducting these analyses, we decided to plant four varieties of Chestnut tree.
In total, 1,500 Chestnut trees were planted, and we forecast that they will sequester more than 250 tons of CO2 during the next 20 years. A study of the economic benefit of the fruit to the local community has not been made, however it is expected to bring a return of over 200,000 euros during the next 20 years.
It is expected that the project will continue to provide fruit and sequester carbon for a much longer period than 20 years. However, the project was based on this time period.
The project has a very long return on investment since we are not assuming fruit profitability or taking into account the current carbon price of 13€/ton.