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Browsing by discipline "Agroecology (Biology of Plant Production)"

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  • Keskitalo, Antti (2009)
    This study was carried out to evaluate environmental impacts of greenhouse tomato production in Finland. Due to the Nordic location of the country, weather conditions do not favor it and production is very energy intensive. Emissions per 1000 kg per produced tomato was selected as functional unit. Two different production methods were selected for the study. 1. Conventional production, what is based on utilization of natural light and for production break during a coldest and darkest part of a year (November-February). 2. Year-round production, which is based on an use of artificial lightning. For information of inputs and outputs, the entrepreneurs of six different greenhouse companies, which produced only tomatoes, were interviewed. Three of them were year-round producers and three of them conventional producers. Average yields were 59,0 and 28,2 kg/m2/y respectively. All the selected three conventional producers used bio-energy for heat production. Data from interviewed companies included emissions of all the inputs, e.g. use of fuels, electricity, fertilizers, transportation and packaging material. Data from Statistical Centre of Finland (TIKE) were also used. Processed data included 16 yearround producers and 165 conventional producers, which produced only tomatoes. Average yields were 52,5 and 33,1 kg/m2/y respectively. Data included only fuel and electricity use. However, a proportion of emissions of fuel and electricity use of total emissions was more than 99 % (Interviewed conventional producers). Impacts of Finnish greenhouse tomato production on Climate change, Tropospheric ozone, Eutrophication and Acidification were calculated. Due to the very intensive energy use, based mainly on burning fossil fuels like heavy fuel oil (66%) significant CO2-emissions are caused. CO2- equivalent emissions from interviewed year-round and conventional companies and from Yearround and conventional TIKE companies were 5115, 512, 6514, and 4614 kg CO2-eq per 1000 kg of tomato respectively. There were low emissions (512 kg CO2-eq per 1000 kg of tomato) from interviewed conventional companies. The low figure is due to the use of bio-energy to provide needed heat for production. Therefore use of bio-energy is a possibility to reduce significantly emissions of Finnish greenhouse tomato production.