This section introduces the issues Australian farmers may face in the future - how climate change may affect agriculture, the importance of soil carbon, the concept of 'carbon farming' to reduce greenhouse emissions, and the bottom line benefits, including the potential to earn income through the government’s Emissions Reduction Fund.
CLIMATE THREATS TO AUSTRALIAN AGRICULTURE
Leading scientists and academics have been resolute in their research findings which determine, if global development continues without effective mitigation of greenhouse gases, the impacts on Australia will be severe.
Even with our best efforts, climate change is likely to have significant impacts on agriculture in Australia (though there are differences in vulnerability depending on region and products).
THE IMPORTANCE OF CARBON IN THE SOIL
Carbon which is stored in soil is an incredibly important part of the wider carbon cycle which is a fundamental part of life on earth. ‘Soil organic carbon’ (SOC) – the amount of carbon stored in the soil is a component of soil organic matter – plant and animal materials in the soil that are in various stages of decay.
WHAT IS CARBON FARMING?
The phrase ‘carbon farming’ means using farming methods that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and/or capture and hold carbon in vegetation and soils.
At the other end of the scale, it can mean developing an integrated whole farm plan to reduce emissions and maximise carbon capture. It includes those activities that earn Australian Carbon Credit Units through the Emissions Reduction Fund.
Find out more information about carbon farming here.