The government’s  announcement of new funding  and measures  to support  adoption of  low emissions technology  includes key  initiatives  for the  agricultural sector.  Support for technology development  to support  soil  carbon  sequestration,  combined with moves to  fast-track development of carbon farming opportunities  is a step in the  right  direction to  achieve a net-zero Australia by 2050.

There are  currently  over 570  registered  land-based  carbon farming  projects, covering  more than  47 million hectares, generating  144  million tonnes of carbon abatement.  These projects  are  injecting  more than  $1.7 billion into rural, regional and remote Australian communities.

These numbers  show  the initial rapid  growth  of  carbon farming,  which  has  since  eased  due  to limitations  of  approved carbon farming methodologies and  the  slow adoption of new technologies.

This  can  change now the  government has adopted several  key recommendations from  the independent King Review  and following today’s announcement of related investments in carbon farming.

The new  investment in emerging land-sector technologies, fast-tracking of  approvals of expanded  carbon farming methods and  planned  regulatory changes to enable multiple carbon farming methods to be  stacked  on one property  will  lead to significant emissions reductions through improved land management  across Australia’s rangelands and productive agricultural areas.

The accelerated development and adoption of emerging technologies, such as drones, geospatial technology and machine learning will support evidence-based land management decision making. Other emerging  agtech  includes novel feeds and supplements that can reduce enteric methane emissions and improve productivity of livestock.

These changes will help to make carbon farming  commercially  viable  and  practical  to implement for family-run farms, agribusiness and Traditional Custodians, and we  expect  to see an accelerated and  renewed up take  across diverse geographies in Australia.

As  this active landscape management approach  is  rolled out, Australia  can gain from the  potential to unlock over 5000 new projects, covering 65 million hectares of land and delivering 2.5 billion tonnes of carbon abatement within 10 years.  This  level  of abatement opens the possibility of supplying an emerging export market  with  sustainable agricultural commodities and  high integrity  land-based carbon credits.

Based on current carbon prices,  up to  $40 billion  can be injected  into regional Australia, enabling a productive and sustainable land sector for the long-term.  The benefits go beyond carbon, fostering reconciliation action through partnerships with Traditional Custodians,  improving  soil health, regenerating biodiverse  forests,  and creating  jobs and local investment  for remote and rural communities.

We look forward to working with our carbon farming partners, the government and other stakeholders  to roll out these initiatives, underpinned by robust governance arrangements,  seizing  the opportunity for the land sector to provide a rapid and material contribution towards a  net-zero emissions  target  by 2050.

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Media enquiries:

Nigel Smith

0491 638 615

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