Carbon Neutral Red Meat Industry

Pathways to a carbon neutral red meat industry

The Australian red meat and livestock industry has set an ambitious greenhouse gas emissions reductions target through its Carbon Neutral by 2030 (CN30) initiative (MLA, 2020). In 2021 it funded a suite of projects through its Carbon Storage Partnership to research different ways of meeting this target. One of the pathways is to consider the benefits to both abatement and biodiversity from using a natural capital accounting approach.

In this new five-year project, we will work with ten case study farm managers operating in a range of livestock production systems across Australia. Natural capital accounts with a focus on biodiversity will be prepared for each farm, considering usual practice at the farm plus alternative management options that may improve biodiversity and/or soil carbon. The effect of implementing the alternative practices on farm-level emissions, production and profitability will be evaluated, including the potential to access emerging carbon and biodiversity markets.

We anticipate that impacts for the industry will include maintaining community support by demonstrating environmental stewardship, and the development of information about income diversification opportunities in ecosystem services markets.

Contact Elizabeth Meier for more information.

MLA (Meat and Livestock Australia), 2020. The Australian Red Meat Industry’s Carbon Neutral by 2030 Roadmap. https://www.mla.com.au/contentassets/e501cd2919064183b57372897a0e1954/2689-mla-cn30-roadmap_d7.pdf. Accessed 11/11/21.

Photo Credit: CSIRO Science Images