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There are different ways to achieve carbon neutrality, including reducing energy, paying for renewable energy credits to replace the energy that we use from the conventional power grid and planting trees to sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Our goal is to constantly reduce our use of energy in every area of our business and to purchase offsets to account for the rest, from the natural gas we continue to burn in our roasters to the fuel in our vehicles. The more we reduce, the less we have to offset.
Although we offset our company's greenhouse gas footprint annually, we realize that our responsibility does not begin or end with Counter Culture Coffee's activities. We value the interconnectedness of our coffee supply chains and we recognize that our coffees come from some of the most ecologically important places in the world, and the biological diversity of their healthy farms assists in mitigating climate change. No other alternative crop—from corn to cattle—coexists in such a harmonious relationship with a diverse natural environment as coffee. Unfortunately, these beautiful and important places are also some of the places most threatened by the effects of climate change: rising temperatures and inconsistent rain patterns jeopardize the ability of these small farmers to make a living on their farms. It’s staggering to consider that our choices as a company here in the United States impact the very people on whom we depend for the product that makes our business possible. Scary as that might sound, the good news is that through these partnerships, we also have the ability to effect change ourselves and demonstrate the value of our beliefs and activities.