Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2015

Document Type


Type of Thesis

Departmental Honors


Environmental Studies

First Advisor

Dale Miller

Second Advisor

Dave Newport

Third Advisor

Keith Stockton


This thesis is a sustainability assessment in which energy and resource consumption are analyzed for two sister businesses, Coffee Lab International and Vermont Artisan Coffee and Tea Co., located in Waterbury, Vermont owned by Mané Alves. The paper begins by providing background information of the coffee industry and investigating a newly emerging market, sustainable coffee. Categories analyzed at the businesses include electricity consumption, propane consumption, water consumption, transportation, waste, and their associated carbon dioxide emissions. A combination of energy bills, business records, and personal observations were used to examine the previously mentioned categories. The purpose of this thesis is to serve as a baseline reference for Mr. Alves to compare the effectiveness of future sustainable initiatives. Mr. Alves is proposing to construct a new building to house his coffee businesses. At the end of the paper, several recommendations are provided for areas in which the sustainability of both businesses can be improved.