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Data Description and Requirements

This document summarizes the producer-level and associated third-party data collected by the ESMC portal. The objectives of this document are to provide the reader with the following:

  1. an understanding of the data being collected;
  2. an overview of the database structures employed to collect and manage the data; and
  3. an introduction on how to utilize and read the detailed data specifications given as part of the OpenAPI specification at, which is the definitive source of record for the data and its interpretation.

Please note that in addition to collecting producer data, the ESMC portal imports data from other platforms, integrates third-party data, generates data, and exports data. An overview of this data is provided below.

Data Intake

Data is collected by the ESMC portal through the following, non-exclusive methods.

  1. Direct data entry into the portal (
  2. Import through the ESMC API (see for details).
  3. Use-case specific manual or scripted inputs directly into the database.
  4. (Future) Producer-initiated import from another platform.

In addition to collecting the data from various sources, the data requested and required by ESMC varies based on the asset or credit for which the producer (or project) is seeking. The five assets and credits presently supported by the portal are as follows:

  1. Scope 1 Green House Gas (GHG) Credit
  2. Scope 1 Water Quality (WQL) Credit
  3. Scope 3 GHG Asset
  4. Scope 3 WQL Asset
  5. Scope 3 Water Quantity (WQN) Asset

The data requirements for each credit/asset are given below.

Data Structure

The ESMC database is structured in an hierarchical manner as illustrated in the following image. In general terms, every project has a list of producers, each producer has a set of fields (which can change on an annual basis), each field has crops and herds which change over time, and each crop and herd are managed with a program.

As noted above, the master data specification for each of the above components is maintained in an OpenAPI format at However, for the reader’s convenient, the following is provided as an introduction to the OpenAPI specification and as a quick data overview summary. For detailed specification, direct links to the relevant OpenAPI specification are provided for the readers convenience.

Since the OpenAPI specification may be new to the reader, the following graphic has been created using the Drainage Component to explain how to read the documentation. As shown, the Drainage Component collect 4 data inputs: percentOfField, tileDepth, treatmentTypes, and treatmentPercentOfFields. Also note that these parameters are required for all credits and assets except for Scope 3 Water Quantity assets as stated in the top table.

Furthermore, note that a description for each parameter (unless the description is self-explanatory, e.g., percentOfField), the valid range of the input parameter, the units of the parameter (when applicable), and the allowable parameter options are provided.

A detailed description of each data element collected on import or provided on export is provided as shown in the following figure. Simply click on a component in the left toolbar to see the detailed data specification for that component. Also, please note that while an example JSON file is given for each component in the right panel (not shown), the JSON format is provided as an aid to the developers and is not needed to understand the parameters.

Data Components

A summary of the data collected for ESMC is organized below by the above data components.

Project Information

The data collected for each project includes the following:

projectThe name of the projectTNC Minnesota Project
idAn internal UUID used to reference the project in the database5f6392058a936e07360cca91
dateThe last date the project was updatedThu Apr 15 2021 16:49:01 GMT+0100 (Ame)
versionThe version number of the data structures1
assetsThe GHG, WQL, and WQN credits/assets the project is applying forScope 1 GHG Credit
Scope 1 WQL Credit
Project data collected by the ESMC portal.
Producer Information

The data collected for each producer enrolled in ESMC is summarized below.

nameThe name of the producerJohn Smith
addressThe producer’s address10 Main Street
cityThe producer’s cityCenterville
stateThe producer’s stateIllinois
zipThe producer’s US postal code61820
phoneThe producer’s phone number555-555-5555
emailThe producer’s email
userByProjectIdAn automatically generated anonymized id for the producerTNCMN-Producer-1
idAn internal UUID used to identify the user in the database5f6392058a936e07360cca91
narrativeHistorical information about the producer’s farm(see narrative below)
Producer data collected by the ESMC portal.
Field Information

The data collected for each of the producer’s fields is summarized below. A detailed summary follows the table below and is given at

nameThe name of the fieldEast 80
fieldByProjectIdAn automatically generated anonymized id for the fieldTNCMN-Field-1
idAn internal UUID used to identify the field in the database5f6392058a936e07360cca91
descriptionA description of the field and the practices on the field as provided by the producerTried using with covers over the last 5 years. Recently, included livestock grazing in recent years. Have been practicing conservation till for the last 7 years.
boundaryThe GIS coordinates of the field boundary(See field)
areaThe area of the field in acres82.43
cropsThe crops planted on the field for one or more growing seasons(See crops)
tractThe FSA tract number
ownershipTypeThe producer’s ownership status of the fieldrented
Options include the corporation-owned, individual-owned-private, individual-owned-multiple, leased, and rented.
leaseRentTermExpirationYearThe year producer’s lease expires2026
irrigationDetails regarding the irrigation system(See irrigation)
historicalPracticesA summary of the historical practices on the field
what’sNewThe new practices that the producer is implementing that will qualify them for ESMCTillage
Options include nutrientManagement, coverCrop, conservationPractices, tillage, prescribedGrazing, and other.
Field data collected by the ESMC portal.
Crop Information

The crop data collected for each field is summarized below.

nameThe name of the cropGMO corn
typeThe crop typeCorn
yieldThe crop yield in bu/acre210
growingSeasonThe growing season of the crop (the crop growing season is defined from harvest of the previous crop to harvest of the current crop)(see growing season)
coverCropThe details about the cover crop, if planted(see covercrop)
residueThe details about the amount of residue left on the field after harvesting the previous crop(see residue)
programNameThe name of the program used to manage the cropConservation till corn
programDescriptionA description of the program used to manage the cropA conservation, strip till program
operationsThe field operations used to manage the program(see Operations)


Data is collected in the ESMC portal for the following operations. Please note that only data for the operations that are performed on a specific field for each specific year needs to be collected.

  1. Baling:
  2. Burning:
  3. Cutting:
  4. Harvest:
  5. Manure fertilizer:
  6. Non-manure fertilizer:
  7. Planting:
  8. Tillage:

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