Saturday, November 20, 2010

Highlights of Draft Design of Carbon Farming Initiative, Part 1

The Carbon Farming Initiative first saw daylight as an election promise - which could make it a fragile prospect for ever being delivered. But when seen in context, it is a sure thing (as sure as anything can be in a 'balanced Parliament' environment)... When the CPRS crashed and burned, Australian consumers and corporates wanting to 'abate' their emissions were offered the voluntary market in the form of the National Carbon Offset Standard. It covers all offsets not covered in Australia's Kyoto commitment - which is mainly farm carbon offsets. Alas, forestry is covered by our Kyoto commitment and its promoters were looking forward to a bonanza under the CPRS. Instead they had the floor fall away from underneath them and the forests ceased marching across the countryside. The CFI plugs that gap for forests because it applies to both Kyoto and non-Kyoto offsets. So the CFI and the NCOS fit together.

The scheme covers reforestation and revegetation; reduced methane emissions from livestock; reduced fertiliser emissions; manure management; reduced emissions and/or increased sequestration in agricultural soils (soil carbon); savanna fire management; avoided deforestation; burning of stubble/crop residue; reduced emissions from rice cultivation; and reduced emissions from landfill waste.

The scheme is scheduled to start on 1 July, 2011.

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