AgForce moves to protect Reef, the environment, and members’ data

Published:

NOTE: This article is older than 12 months

AgForce has moved quickly to protect the Great Barrier Reef, the Queensland environment and the integrity of members’ data, following the introduction into Parliament of the Reef Protections Bill*.

When passed, as early as today, the Bill will give the Queensland Government the power to compulsorily acquire the data of over 3,000 farmers, voluntarily supplied by them to participate in the industry’s Best Management Practice (BMP) programs.

The BMP programs have been developed by industry to help producers benchmark their operations and identify opportunities to implement industry best practice, thereby improving their productivity and sustainability.

However, CEO Michael Guerin said the risk that the Government may use member’s data for purposes for which it was not provided, such as determining compliance with the new Reef regulations, meant that AgForce had to act to protect its members.

“Given our commitment to BMP participants to protect their information, we have been left with no choice but to permanently remove this data,” Mr Guerin said.

“The inevitable consequence is that the BMP programs, which have done so much to improve the sustainability of grazing and grain production over the past decade, and seen Queensland agriculture become a world leader, are effectively over in their current form.

“This is a heartbreaking outcome, because protecting the Reef, one of our international icons, and preserving the natural environment is a primary concern of agriculture.

“However, AgForce is now working on a strategy to implement an even more effective program to improve environmental outcomes, like reducing erosion and runoff, sequestering carbon, conserving soil moisture and increasing bio-diversity.

“Our ‘Natural Capital’ program will form the basis of a scheme to incentivise producers to provide environmental outcomes far above and beyond those that would have been achieved by the Government’s punitive legislation.

“Experience has shown that such legislation is an expensive way to ensure minimum compliance, rather than empowering genuine, enduring behaviour change and proactive implementation.

“AgForce strongly opposed the Bill on the grounds that it won’t guarantee any benefit to the Reef in terms of water quality and is an unnecessary impost on farmers of even more red tape and expensive fines for non-compliance.

“Farmers and graziers manage over 80 per cent of Queensland’s landscapes, and are proud of their reputation as responsible stewards of the land.

“We are looking to work collaboratively with industry and community partners in developing our Natural Capital tool so Queensland’s environment flourishes into the future.”


* Environmental Protection (Great Barrier Reef Protection Measures & Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019)

 
Business Business & Economy Conservation Environment Political Primary Industries Queensland Government
Social:   

AgForce Queensland :
Level 2, 110 Mary Street, Brisbane Qld 4000, Queensland Wide
07 3236 3100
AgForce Queensland
Showing 10+ recent articles for this business
AgForce welcomes Cane Board and new members 26 May 2020 | AgForce Cane is now a reality, with AgForce and the former Invicta Combined Growers Organisation (ICGO) signing and lodging the official paperwork on Friday. More information...
Assistance rightly continued as drought rages on 25 May 2020 | AgForce has applauded the State Government for its decision to continue offering essential drought support measures for a further year as drought conditions continue across much of Queensland. More information...
AgForce welcomes State waivers on land rent, transport fees 01 May 2020 | Pastoralists with grazing leases on crown land are celebrating this week after the State Government announced a 6‑month waiver on land rents – other than minimum rent leases – to provide an economic stimulus... More information...
‘Radical activism’ the last thing we need in our banks 21 April 2020 | The apparent refusal of some banks to lend to industries they believe are “socially sensitive” – such as firearms and live animal exports – has been condemned by AgForce as not only discriminatory but an... More information...
Australia won’t go hungry while our farmers have our backs 24 March 2020 | While we live in troubling times, there is one thing Australians don’t have to worry – running out of high-quality fresh food. More information...
Clock ticking on primary producer land valuations 07 March 2020 | AgForce is warning primary producers throughout Queensland not to delay if they want to object to their new land valuations – or risk being lumped with higher rates and rent. More information...
AgForce congratulates trailblazing Georgie Somerset on Order of Aust 28 January 2020 | AgForce is thrilled that our General President Georgie Somerset has been named a Member of the Order of Australia in recognition of her long-term advocacy for rural and regional Australians. More information...
Government’s failure to grasp drought crisis ‘shameful’: AgForce 16 January 2020 | The failure of the State Government to appreciate the seriousness of the drought crisis – and its ongoing unwillingness to accept advice from people on the ground – have left many rural communities on the... More information...
Let’s solve water security before we worry about water meters: AgForce 10 December 2019 | The current furore over water meters is “putting the water cart before the horse” according to AgForce, who say the State first needs to solve its water security issue. More information...
Growing national interest in ‘natural capital’ a potential game-changer 05 December 2019 | AgForce has welcomed endorsement by the National Farmers Federation (NFF) and the Federal Government that the concept of ‘natural capital’ offers a way to improve both environmental outcomes and farm profit... More information...


comments powered by Disqus

All articles submitted by third parties or written by My Sunshine Coast come under our Disclaimer / Terms of Service