Australians now have an opportunity to share their views on how the agriculture and land sectors can play a part in the Albanese Government’s economy-wide Net Zero 2050 Plan.
A discussion paper for the Agriculture and Land Plan – one of six sectoral decarbonisation plans under the Net Zero 2050 Plan – has been released as part of broader public consultation.
Agriculture, as a sector in the National Greenhouse Account, made up 16.8 percent of national greenhouse gas emissions in 2020–21. This share expected to increase as other parts of the economy, such as the electricity sector, take up more readily available and lower cost abatement options.
The agricultural industry has long been calling for collaborative policy and national plans to ensure a profitable, productive and sustainable future. Modelling from the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) shows that recent seasonal conditions (2001 to 2020) reduced the profitability of Australian broadacre farms by an average of 23 percent, or around $29,200 per farm.
Producers and land managers are adapting but reducing emissions is a complex task and needs strong collaboration with governments. The discussion paper will be the start of a longer-term, ongoing discussion with the sector on lower emissions pathways.
Minister Watt said the discussion paper is about understanding and identifying opportunities for the sector in reducing emissions while building agricultural productivity, sustainability and resilience. The government is seeking views and feedback from industry, experts and the community on ways that agriculture and land can contribute to the whole-of-economy emissions reduction task. Farmers and landholders are already seeing the impact of climate change on their businesses, and have been leaders in sustainability for a long time. Their expertise in this area will be valuable in putting together the Plan.
Minister Bowen said Australian farmers are on the front line of climate change and working with the agriculture sector will help us reach Australia’s net zero goals and protect this critical industry.