Who will be Carbon Cocky of the Year? Call for entries

Monday, August 29, 2011
The search for Australia’s best ‘carbon farmer’ is on as part of the Carbon Cocky of the Year Awards. What started as a competition for farmers in the Central West of NSW five years ago has now gone national to celebrate the passing of the Carbon Farming Initiative legislation which provides incentives for farmers to adopt sustainable practices. More than 35 carbon farmers have been recognised in the Awards since they started in 2007. “At that time the link between farming and climate change was all negative, focussing on emissions. But the positive contribution agriculture can make by extracting CO2 from the atmosphere was best communicated by celebrating the people who invented carbon farming: carbon farmers,” says Louisa Kiely, organiser of the Awards.

Notable farmer/innovators in the Central West include Col Seis from Gulgong (pasture cropping), Bruce Maynard from Narromine (no-till/no-kill cultivation), and Michael Inwood of Bathurst (electric utility truck). The Awards are being conducted as part of Carbon Farming Week on 27-29 September, 2011 in Dubbo NSW. They are to be presented at the Gala Awards Dinner which is to be staged during the Carbon Farming Conference & Expo.

The theme of the conference is “Preparing farmers to trade”, reflecting the new opportunities to earn carbon credits by on-farm activities including storing carbon in soils and trees, reducing emissions from animals and reducing emissions from fertiliser. The Award is still open for 2011 for conservation graziers and conservation farmers who have innovated their farm management for greater sustainability. Click here for more information about the awards.

High profile sponsors of this year’s awards include Best Environmental Technologies, Ylad Living Soils, and Principle Focus. Organising the Awards and the Conference and Expo is Carbon Farmers of Australia, a not-for-profit company which provides education, information and representation services for carbon farmers. Carbon Farmers of Australia is part of a consortium which has submitted a methodology for soil carbon credits to the Department of Climate Change & Energy Efficiency’s expert panel, the Domestic Offsets Integrity Committee, for approval. Once approved, it will be the only national soil carbon offsets system operating in the world. 

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