AgForce CEO Mike Guerin (Photo: AgForce)

February 10, 2021

AgForce Queensland has emphasised the important role agriculture will play if Australia is to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

The lobby group wants agriculture “to continue to lead the charge towards net zero emissions, not be exempt from it, and be recognised for the positive contribution it makes”.

And it renewed calls for producers to be recognised and compensated for the carbon sequestration on their land, ie. carbon stored in soil and vegetation.

CEO Michael Guerin said agriculture was a strong part of the climate change solution and was ready to take part in the conversation with Australia’s science community and political leaders to ensure an evidence-based approach was implemented.

“It will be incredibly difficult for Australia to achieve its climate change targets if agriculture is excluded from our nation’s goal to reach zero emissions,” Mr Guerin said.

“Agriculture doesn’t want a free pass from its responsibility to the planet. Instead, Australia can embrace the enormous amount we are already doing and will continue to do when it comes to reducing emissions.

“Critical, however, to any success in reaching a carbon emissions goal will be establishing the net carbon position for agriculture and land management – genuine baselining that puts the producer at the heart of any deliberations.

“After all, you can’t have a target if you don’t know where you’re starting from.

“Our own Landscape Management Committee has developed a method for measuring sequestration and emissions at the property level – and measurements clearly show that many or most member properties in Queensland are carbon neutral or better. Many are in fact sequestering much more than they emit.

“Incentivising producers to build natural capital and restore landscapes will only increase agriculture’s ability and desire to help meet our climate targets.

“This includes compensation for undertaking carbon sequestration services, respect for property rights to give producers the flexibility to manage their land in a way that ensures financial and environmental sustainability, and recognition that producers are making real on-farm decisions that improve the environment at significant personal financial expense.

“As with most things, it’s about balance.

“Too far one way, we lose our ability to farm and put at risk the unbroken food supply chain we take for granted in Australia. Too far the other, we risk further damaging the planet.

“AgForce is ready to have a discussion, one that includes agriculture at the centre of helping address the global challenge of climate change.

“As always for agriculture, it’s about ensuring we protect the land and the environment we rely on for our livelihood, now and into the future, so that we can go on providing for everyone.”


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