Farmers, researchers, finance representatives and conservation managers have come together today to discuss how the industry can best transition to a low carbon, sustainable future.
The Natural Capital Summit, being held today and tomorrow as part of Queensland’s first ever Climate Week, is bringing together representatives from the land, agriculture, finance and environmental sector who will develop a roadmap to accelerate action towards a sustainable future.
Speaking at the Summit today, Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef Leeanne Enoch said the Palaszczuk Government was committed to supporting a sustainable agricultural sector that benefits the environment and creates jobs in regional communities.
“This is the first ever Climate Week being held in Queensland, and in Australia, and it is critical that we have these conversations so we can address climate change and ensure a better future,” Ms Enoch said.
“The Summit, being delivered by Climateworks Australia, will facilitate discussions about how we can value a range of natural assets, including soil, water and other living things, to produce positive outcomes.
“The Summit is a first step in documenting priority actions for guiding the land and agriculture sector’s transition to a low carbon and climate changed world by 2030, and then zero net emissions by 2050.”
Farmers for Climate Action Chief Executive Officer Verity Morgan-Schmidt said that farmers were on the frontline of climate change and wanted to be part of the solution.
“Farmers are already adopting climate-smart agricultural practices including sustainable intensification, diversification into renewable energy, revegetation, soil carbon sequestration, and regenerative agriculture,” Ms Morgan-Schmidt said.
“Farmers are eager to find out more about climate change and its potential impact on agriculture - and what they can do about it.”
Minister Enoch said the Palaszczuk Government recognised that the agricultural sector was committed to environmental protection.
“There is huge potential to increase this protection while also creating and expanding new industries while also creating jobs.
“That is why our Government has established a $500 million Land Restoration Fund, to expand carbon farming opportunities to generate new job and revenue sources for Queensland communities, including the agricultural sector.
“And this work has already started. Earlier this year I announced the first six successful projects under the Fund, which are exploring carbon farming – which is farming in a way that reduces emissions or traps carbon in the soil – and laying the foundations that will enable the industry to grow.
“Queensland’s emerging carbon farming industry could contribute up to $8 billion to the Queensland economy by 2030 helping to generate new jobs, revenue streams and market opportunities especially for regional, rural, and First Nations communities.”
For more information on Climate Week QLD go to www.climateweekqld.com.
Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Minister for Science and Minister for the Arts
The Honourable Leeanne Enoch