Launching his latest update to his 2008 climate review, Professor Garnaut suggested the Coalition's proposal would struggle to win over farmers as it would pay them less than the likely market value of their work.
''[The Coalition proposal] of $8 to $10 a tonne is short-changing Australian farmers - abatement is worth more than that,'' he said.
Professor Garnaut said there was not much point second-guessing how much farmers would be prepared to do, but he said there were great opportunities to cut emissions using soil carbon. He said both sides of politics were right to investigate it.
From the Sydney Morning Herald, 3 March
On Tuesday Professor Ross Garnaut said it was unlikely the Coalition would achieve the calculated abatement for the price it was offering.
Michael Kiely, the co-convener of the Carbon Coalition, who was cited by the opposition in support of its policy when it was released last February, said yesterday the price offered to farmers for soil carbon abatement should ''start at $25 and head north''.
Mr Kiely said some abatement might be possible at $8 to $10 a tonne, but farmers would be cautious about taking on the risk involved in the long-term commitment to leave the carbon permanently stored, and could need to be paid a ''stewardship payment'' of another $5 a tonne every five years or so.