Yes, that most magic of symbols – the tree connects the ‘above and the below’, joining one with the other and providing all manner of life-giving gifts.
No matter if you connect with trees from the angle of their ancient life symbol, for their generous shade and shelter for stock, their ‘otherworldly connotations – e.g. as an Ent of Middle Earth or you simply like to secretly hug one every now and again, trees, like the bees, are part of the essential fabric of the natural world.
It’s no wonder then that they should be grown also for the Carbon they take out of the air and stability they give to the soils. Talk about a win/win/win.
This is why, at the conference, we will explore two ways ‘Tree Plantings’ can be rewarded in the Carbon Farming world.
The Clean Energy Regulator (CER) has been refining and improving the methods around tree planting to encourage more of these projects.
So, how can a tree be planted and a farmer be rewarded with a Carbon Credit for the carbon they take out of the air under the Emissions Reduction Fund methods?
Let me count the ways!
Let’s talk about Environmental Plantings
The method which has the widest application, and which has also been ‘simplified’ by the CER is officially called ‘The reforestation by environmental or mallee plantings FullCam method’. We just like to call it ‘Environmental Plantings’.
This method involves establishing and maintaining vegetation such as trees or shrubs on land that has been clear of forest for at least 5 years. You can plant either a mix of trees, shrubs, and understory species native to the local area or species of mallee eucalypts.
The mix must be capable of achieving a height of 2m or above and 20% canopy cover when ‘looking down’ at the forest.
Quite a lovely method to establish a biodiverse forest and may be able to be rewarded also for ‘biodiversity’ credits. Several pilots are underway to determine how this might occur.
Main barrier? Cost of trees and establishment. Solve that and you have a relatively easy project to register. Of course, to be aware of other risks such as fire/drought, etc.
For the keen, here is the full method, however, we will be discussing/outlining this method both at the conference and at the ADVANCED workshop the day after the conference.
The Advanced Workshop is designed to take you from what you learn at the conference to the ability to register a project, or at least understand the requirements.
Secondly – I recently came across this concept
As reported briefly in another newsletter, there is always ‘new’ thinking coming forward. YAY.
Our speaker Wendy Perdon is from WA, however the concept is Australia-wide and funded by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
The concept (as I understand it currently) is to supply farmers with a single type of tree under the Farm Forestry method. Farmer gets the credits during the time of the project, and after the life of the project – 25 years – the timber industry gets the timber.
NOTE: These will be single tree species and currently looking at blue gum, pine, and potentially sandalwood. This is a concept I’ve only just come across, but happy to be including it in the conference as it appears to solve a few of the cost barriers for tree plantings.
Don’t miss this session.
And, there is another one!
This one is more specialised and won’t be explored at the conference, but here it is FYI:
Is the plantation forestry method suitable for your business?
- Are you considering establishing a new plantation forest?
- Do you manage an existing short rotation plantation forest?
- Would participating in the ERF incentivise you to continue plantation activities or transition to a permanent forest, under circumstances where you would have otherwise converted that land to non-forested land in the absence of the ERF?
If you answered yes to one of these questions, the plantation forestry method may be suitable for your business. Explore it here.
So, time galloping on. The conference is going to be GREAT. Get going and register now before Early Bird closes after Easter!
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