Carbon partnership to benefit landholders
South East Queensland is set to become one of Australia's hotspots for carbon sequestration following the new partnership between South East Queensland Catchments (SEQC) and Australia's leading not-for-profit carbon trading organisation, Landcare CarbonSMART.
SEQ Catchments has appointed the state's first ‘super assessor', Farm Forestry Officer Paul Daly, who will be responsible for assessing and registering carbon sinks based on biodiverse landcare revegetation plantings on private land.
SEQ Catchments is a community based business that sources and coordinates investment in activities that help South East Queensland to a sustainable future and restores natural resources for the benefit of future generations.
"We believe the Landcare CarbonSMART model of assisting rural landholders to regenerate land parcels not being used for agriculture is excellent," said Daly. "It not only delivers the landholder an income stream from carbon credits, it also delivers the inherent benefits of revegetation including stock and crop protection, improvement of erosion and soil salinity problems and invigorated biodiversity, all of which promotes greater productivity on the land."
"At SEQC, our role is to secure a sustainable future through community involvement, government and industry partnerships, so our involvement with Landcare CarbonSMART is a positive association," said Daly.
Landcare CarbonSMART provides financial incentives for landholders to maintain eligible carbon credit vegetation on their land. The amount of carbon absorbed by vegetation is calculated and sold to individuals and businesses to help them take responsibility for carbon emissions. Landcare CarbonSMART operates as a carbon pool with a majority percentage of sales paid to the landholder, a percentage to a recovery fund (in case of vegetation failure or unavoidable destruction cause by fire or disease) and a percentage to the management and operation of the pool.
Landholders receive annual payments and when the price of carbon rises, so too will payments to landholders with the value of carbon trading is estimated to be worth US$3.1 trillion by 2020.
"South East Queensland has one of the best profiles in the country for carbon sequestration and with so many people choosing to make the area their home it makes sense to protect and enhance the beauty, environmental and lifestyle values of the region" said Landcare CarbonSMART Managing Director, Matt Reddy. "One of the main benefits is the protection of waterways and water quality which can be achieved through native vegetation plantings."
As part of a major partnership with Landcare CarbonSMART, GM Holden will donate the use of four Holden Colorado diesel four wheel drive vehicles to the program.
GM Holden's Associate Director – Government Relations and Public Policy, Samantha Read, said the company was always looking for tangible ways to support Landcare's long term environmental initiatives.
"GM Holden's six year history with Landcare has been to support a wide range of long-term revegetation programs.
GM Holden also wants to ensure we contribute to CarbonSMART's objective of reducing Australia's carbon footprint by providing four dual cab diesel vehicles to the program across Australia." said Ms Read.
An initiative of Landcare Australia Limited, Landcare CarbonSMART was launched in March 2007 and now operates in all states and territories. Landcare CarbonSMART is supported by the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, along with corporate supporters GM Holden, Westpac, Coles, Elders, Kraft and Freehills.
Landcare Australia is a not-for-profit organisation that supports landcare, the country's biggest environmental volunteer movement.