Eficiencia ambiental y eficiencia económica de las fincas lecheras de la cooperativa Dos Pinos, Costa Rica
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The depletion of non-renewable resources is obvious (BP, 2010). Our dependence on these resources encourages us to find solutions to reduce their use in some production processes. This study gives us a methodology to estimate how much environmental impact reduction could be achieved in dairy bovine farms of Costa Rica without increasing their production costs. The combination of a life cycle analysis and two DEA optimization models allows us to reach this objective. The environmental impact unit is the fuel-equivalent (EQF). With our working hypotheses and studied sample, we obtain that the objective of environmental impact minimization goes hand in hand with that of production costs minimization. More precisely, implementing economic efficiency in 37 studied farms allows an average economy of 2 USD by preserved EQF. In other words, the environmental impact of the sample can be reduced on average by 20.6 % (119.3 to 90.3 EQF/1000 liters of milk) in parallel with an average production costs reduction of 18.8%. Further investigation is of course needed to check the reliability and robustness of these results. In particular, we should test the methodology on a much larger sample.