Farmers have welcomed the NSW government’s strengthened 2030 emissions reduction target of 50 per cent, and are now looking to the Federal Government for their plan.
The NSW government has increased its climate ambition up from its previous 35 per cent target to reduce emissions below 2005 levels by 2030 – all on the path to net zero by 2050. The new target brings NSW up to speed with Victoria and South Australia.
Farmers for Climate Action CEO Fiona Davis said: “This is brilliant news for regional NSW and shows the NSW government acknowledges we need strong climate policy this decade.
“A national net zero target and a stronger interim goal is so important for Australia’s future and brings many opportunities to farmers and our agriculture industry including ways for farming families to diversify their incomes and increase productivity and profitability. Now it’s time for the Federal Government to catch-up and back our industry too.
“Our recent Ernst & Young report showed agriculture can achieve net zero emissions by 2040 while increasing productivity. Farmers are already taking steps towards net zero, which is not just possible but preferable, economically and environmentally.”
Sheep and cattle farmer Rob Lee, who is based near Orange, said: “While this is a welcome target from NSW we need a strong national plan that includes strengthened interim goals.
“The farming community and industries which are at the coalface of climate change are embracing the challenge because we realise that change is not all about struggle and cost but also about great opportunity.
“The federal Nationals have been so transfixed with protecting the way we currently do things they are a barrier to any attempt to help the country move. It’s time for them to back farmers and a strong national plan on climate.”
Farmers for Climate Action’s report found there are huge opportunities for farming families to gain from strong climate policy, and that agriculture can achieve net zero emissions by 2040. The report was produced by economic consultants Ernst & Young with insight from farmers, industry leaders and climate researchers.
Farmers for Climate Action is a movement of more than 6000 farmers and rural Australians seeking to ensure that farmers, who are on the frontlines of climate change, are a part of the solution.