Quotes attributable to Tony Mahar, CEO, National Farmers’ Federation
Some in the farming community are understandably alarmed by the methane policy announced in New Zealand this week.
NFF is actively engaged in discussions with the Australian Government about its approach to the Methane Pledge.
We’ve sought several assurances to guarantee that any decision to sign the pledge would not negatively impact farmers. These include: no new taxes or regulation on livestock methane; recognition of agriculture’s existing plans and progress; and ongoing support to develop technology-led solutions.
We’ve been given these assurances and its important they be upheld if and when a formal commitment is made otherwise the trust with the farming sector and rural and regional Australia will be broken.
Farmers are already leading the way on climate action, with ambitious targets and massive investment in new technologies and practices.
Australia’s farm sector has already reduced its emissions by 53% on 2005 levels. And our red meat sector – the largest emitter of methane – is planning to be carbon neutral by 2030.
The Government has committed to support this technology-led approach using funding from the National Reconstruction Fund and this is a much-welcomed promise.
This will help commercialise home-grown scientific breakthroughs such as feed additives which can reduce ruminant methane emissions by up to 50%.
Australians should be proud of the work underway to improve the sustainability of our farm sector. It’s because of our global leadership on low-emissions agriculture that the New Zealand approach would be so damaging and unnecessary here in Australia.