Carbon farmers see forest for the trees

December 18th, 201111:29 pm @

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Farmers and land managers across Australia will now be able to generate extra revenue while reducing carbon pollution by planting permanent native forest trees in the latest Carbon Farming Initiative methodology announced this week.

The Gillard Government’s Carbon Farming Initiative, which opened for business on 8 December 2011, enables farmers, land owners, local government and other stakeholders to reduce carbon pollution while generating extra revenue.

Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Mark Dreyfus said the Methodology for quantifying carbon sequestration by permanent environmental plantings of native species using the CFI Reforestation Modelling Tool will provide a sustainable basis for carbon farming and long-term biodiversity conservation.

“Actions to reduce pollution or increase carbon storage can increase the land sector’s resilience to climate change, protect Australia’s natural environment and improve long term farm productivity,” Mr Dreyfus said.

Mr Dreyfus said the methodology promotes the important role that farmers and landholders play when it comes to reducing carbon pollution.

“This methodology allows land holders across a broad range of agricultural industries to be credited for the establishment and management of permanent native forests.”

“Those credits can then be sold to businesses that want to offset their carbon pollution – generating extra revenue for farmers and land managers across Australia,” Mr Dreyfus said.

Eligible projects include planting or seeding species native to the local area on cleared or partially cleared land. The methodology was developed in consultation with industry and the farming community and assessed by the independent Domestic Offsets Integrity Committee.

“Design of the Carbon Farming Initiative means that environmental planting projects would be excluded if they were to have a material adverse impact on water availability, biodiversity conservation, employment, local communities or access to land for agriculture,” Mr Dreyfus said.

“Land managers can start planning projects based on the methodology now and can immediately apply to participate in the Carbon Farming Initiative. The methodology is supported by easy to use tools that help farmers to get started earning carbon credits.”

The methodology, supporting tools and information on the Carbon Farming Initiative is available on the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency website at www.climatechange.gov.au/cfi

Article source: http://fw.farmonline.com.au/news/state/agribusiness-and-general/general/carbon-farmers-see-forest-for-the-trees/2395955.aspx