It will cost too much to plant large carbon forests, says the CSIRO which has been studying areas of opportunity for carbon forestry, especially in the Murray-Darling Basin. It found the shortage of tree seed and labour would limit plantings. "What you find is if there's a high establishment cost, say $3000 per hectare, and you start to look at commercial interest rates, it's going to take a high carbon price, say over $40 a tonne, to see any real area of opportunity over which carbon forestry will be profitable," says Dr Michael Battaglia.
What’s a carbon farm?
Any farm can become a carbon farm by working to prevent the release of carbon dioxide (and other greenhouse gases) into the atmosphere.
“A carbon farm is a farm that is run with an objective of not only growing food and fibre, but of growing carbon [capture] and reducing emissions.
We like to think of it as a carbon positive business entity,” says Michael Kiely, farmer and director of Carbon Farmers of Australia (CFA), who has been campaigning for soil carbon trading since 2005.