Tuesday, November 29, 2022



Soil carbon markets: science or snake oil? Matthew Harrison, Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture

Matthew Harrison's presentation covers a range of issues relating to soil carbon markets, from changes in soil carbon over time to whether we should rethink soil carbon markets, beginning with the key question: why all the hype about soil carbon?

Dirt-cheap solar evaporation could provide soil pollution solution: UniSA

A team led by University of South Australia researchers has pioneered a new soil remediation technique that is significantly faster, simpler, safer, and more cost-effective than currently available method … a new remediation technique that uses a super-efficient solar evaporation surface to draw water from the soil through a sponge-like filter that traps contaminants, mimicking the process of transpiration that occurs in natural plants, but at a greatly accelerated rate.

Keeping crops a head above water: GRDC

With wet conditions saturating large areas of crop production land across Victoria and Tasmania, a GRDC project is identifying ways to maximise crop performance when waterlogging occurs ... Applying nitrogen can help crops recover after being waterlogged, and looking at where waterlogging occurs when it is happening can help growers to plan improved drainage to prevent future waterlogging.

Review – Farm – the making of a climate activist

A good place to start reading Farm is at the back. That may sound counterintuitive but by taking a look at the extensive bibliography you’ll quickly see how intensely researched the book is which adds weight to the arguments and questions it presents. While Farm is a memoir that chronicles the journey of Nicola Harvey and her husband after they leave their city lives to farm cattle in rural New Zealand, it is far more than that.

Naturally smart farming

Kylie Cook. Natural Intelligence Farming improves pasture diversity and productivity, rebuilds soils, repairs landscapes and benefits human and livestock health. The manager of Prospect Pastoral Co, a Wheatbelt mixed cropping and livestock operation of more than 60,000ha, Di Haggerty, spoke to the Wilson Inlet Growers Group in July ... She said Wheatbelt farmers faced many challenges, a drying climate, ‘gutless’ sandy soils, salinity and erosion of bare ground between cropping seasons.

Have your say on the National Soil Action Plan: DAFF

Public consultation is now open on Australia’s first national action plan on soil ... “As the first action plan under the 20-year National Soil Strategy, it is important that there is a focus on setting good foundations for future actions to halt and reverse soil degradation and improve soil health”: DAFF

Another step for rare earths

Chris Oldfield. A Koppamurra Landholder Reference Group (KLRG) has been formed by Australian Rare Earths as it takes another step towards developing a mining lease application ... The aim of the landholder reference group is to share information and seek feedback on the Koppamurra project.

Mapping report shows salinity still a significant issue: MacTiernan

Sustainable land management in Western Australia has been boosted by a ground-breaking initiative that has more accurately calculated the extent of salinity in the agricultural region to support new approaches to conserving natural assets and agricultural productivity. The 'Mapping salt-affected land in the South-West of Western Australia using satellite remote sensing' report by the national science agency, CSIRO, and the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) was released at a forum in Perth.

Healthy Soils Project seeks local farmers

Mount Alexander Sustainability Group’s Healthy Soils team is looking for commercial farmers with soil issues within a 50-60km radius from Castlemaine. This Healthy Soils Project offers the opportunity for 20 participating farms to receive free soil constraint assessments and soil testing, as well as assistance with developing a soil health management and monitoring plan.

AgTech to cut rural landholders soil carbon measurement cost by up to 90 per cent

Australian owned agricultural technology company Agrimix is set to release a toolkit that will see the cost of soil carbon measurement cut up to 90%.

Ground breaking trial returning cotton textile waste to cotton fields in Goondiwindi, Queensland shows promising results

A 12 month trial on a cotton farm just outside the rural town of Goondiwindi Queensland in Australia has shown it’s possible to divert large amounts of cotton textile waste at end of life from landfill with no harm done to soil health or cotton yields. Project collaborators are confident that with a solid business plan and more research, returning shredded cotton products to cotton fields could soon offer benefits to soil health, and a scalable solution to the massive global problem of textile waste.

Soil health testing unearths potential for Queensland cane growers

“Comparing soil health in sugarcane growing districts to soil health in pasture, horticulture and cropping regions shows just how unique those sugarcane soil systems are. Many cane growers may not have measured their soil health before but with commodity prices remaining strong in this regulated market, we’re seeing cane growers becoming increasingly interested in soil health" : Rob Dwyer, Incitec Pivot Fertilisers agronomist.

Webinar replay: Meet Carbon Count – carbon farming made easy, fast and profitable

Our end–to–end carbon farming project management software is growing in capabilities and global reach! View the webinar recording.

Webinar: Meet Carbon Count – carbon farming made easy, fast and profitable, 23 June 2022

Join us to learn how to design and deliver carbon projects with Carbon Count and produce verifiable, high–quality carbon credits!

Bring your garden back to life after the flood

Bernice Shepherd. For many of us, getting into the garden is a healing and grounding activity, a balm for the soul. But after devastating floods and relentless wet weather, what was once a beautiful sanctuary or productive food garden has become a muddy, stinky quagmire, no good for growing anything.

Carbon, cash, cattle and the climate crisis: UTas

An invited presentation by Associate Professor Matthew Harrison from the University of Tasmania presents a summary of recent research in climate change adaptation and greenhouse gas emissions mitigation for the agriculture sector. Questions are welcome.

WICC sets sights on net zero with biochar plan

Shaun Ossinger, Patricia Gill. A Wilson Inlet Catchment Committee project, Green waste towards net zero, will target the conversion of Denmark’s green waste into biochar ... Instead of burning the green waste at Denmark’s Waste Transfer Station or transporting it to Albany’s Hanrahan Road tip, WICC is seeking solutions that benefit farmers and the community.

The effects of biochar feed supplementation on GHG emissions and cattle liveweight gain: is it worthwhile?

Nicoli Barnes, UTas. It has been suggested that biochar improves animal health and liveweight gain. It has also been suggested that biochar reduces enteric methane and, by increasing carbon content in the manure, may improve soil carbon over time. Together these effects would theoretically reduce whole farm emissions. In an MLA-funded research programme, we are testing this theory using in a farm experiment near Deloraine, Tasmania.

Flood waste on Northern Rivers farms turned into useful mulch

Australia’s most trusted rural charity, Rural Aid, has helped Northern Rivers farmers turn rotting flood waste into a healthy by-product for soil improvement, through a partnership with Multikraft Probiotic Solutions. Multikraft’s MicroBalance product was last week sprayed by helicopter onto 33 farms in northern New South Wales.

Sewage solution lights up Logan’s carbon ambitions

Logan City Council has opened an innovative new facility that turns human waste into energy and fertiliser ... The facility, which is the first of its kind in Australia, blasts sewage with extremely high heat to turn it into a product called biochar. Biochar can be used for a variety of purposes including as a fertiliser for the agricultural industry. It also has potential applications in the building industry.

Compost in sponge cities are the answer to building climate resilience: CORE

Research conducted by the Centre for Organic Research & Education (CORE) has developed recycled content technologies that can turn cities and farmlands into Sponges that can adapt to more frequent flooding and drought events to reduce the risk they present to our communities ... May 1st to 7th marks International Compost Awareness Week (ICAW) in Australia.

Fertiliser test strips fine-tune fertiliser decisions

GRDC Agronomy Solutions Director Sean Mason ... says the use of pre-season soil testing results from within paddock zones together with test strips can fine-tune fertiliser recommendations and ensure growers are getting the most bang for their fertiliser buck.

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