Carbon Farming Safeguards welcomed by farmers

NSW Farmers President James Jackson says proposed new veto powers for the Agriculture Minister have a lot of merit.

The proposed rule changes would give federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud the power to prevent certain types of large native vegetation projects from going ahead if they would have an adverse impact on agricultural production or communities.

“One of the big concerns is that ‘Carbon Farms’ don’t require a workforce and don’t spend money in town,” Mr Jackson said.

“We don’t have any problem with a farmer wanting to convert some land into native forest revegetation if they want, but there needs to be balance and this is a step towards ensuring that balance.

“We welcome this announcement and look forward to seeing the outcome in the new year.”

Mr Jackson said farmers were concerned about the unintended consequences of well-meaning initiatives like the Emissions Reduction Fund and wanted to ensure there were safeguards for communities and agriculture.

“Farmers are good land managers and take care of their neighbours, but there is a concern that if these forests aren’t actively managed they become a haven for pest animals and plants, and become a fire hazard as we saw two summers ago,” Mr Jackson said.

“We’re not saying these projects should never happen – far from it, if a farmer wants to do it, does it properly and can benefit from it, that’s a good thing.

“I think this is a positive move from the Minister and we look forward to seeing more common sense in decision making.”

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