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NEXUS project: exploring profitable, sustainable livestock businesses in an increasingly variable climate - milestone report 3
This milestone report details our progress in selecting case study farmers, greenhouse gas accounting of the case study farms, and the involve and partner approach (the final version of this milestone report will be submitted on 20 June 2020).
A beef farmer in NW Tasmania has agreed to act as a case study farm. We have met with this farmer via video-conference twice in the last weeks to collect information on his farm system and financials. We have briefed a second potential case study farmer, but do not have confirmation of his involvement at the time of writing. The final version of this milestone will contain an update on the second case study farmer, including quantification of his baseline farm emissions.
The greenhouse gas emissions of a 350-mature cow beef enterprise located on the NW coast of Tasmania (case study farm 1) was estimated using the national inventory approach. Greenhouse gas emissions totalled 2,413 t of carbon dioxide equivalents (t CO2e). Meat production from finished stock in addition to culled animals totalled 302 t liveweight, thus the emissions intensity of meat production was estimated as 8.0 t CO2e/ t liveweight, or 16.0 t CO2e/ t dressed weight (assuming 50% carcase weight). This is lower than other published results, highlighting the already efficient farm in terms of lower emissions intensity. The relatively low emissions intensity of case study farm 1 provides a good opportunity to determine the extent to which emissions intensity can be further lowered by application of adaptations in the NEXUS project.
The Involve and Partner Strategy has been developed iteratively with feedback from MLA. We will partner with three leading red meat farmers to implement a selected farm system practice change. Such practice change may be derived from other LPP partners. Two Involve and Partner Farms (IPF) will host a discussion group facilitated by the project. The discussion groups will focus on the IPF practice changes being tested and will explore the wider range of prospective adaptations from the Nexus project in terms of productivity, profitability and emissions mitigation. The development of viable implementation pathways for prospective adaptations will be a feature of the discussion group activities. Qualitative social parameters and quantitative farming system parameters from IPFs as well as discussion group participants will be monitored during and beyond the life of the Nexus project. Results from the Nexus project as well as learnings from IPFs and discussion groups will be disseminated via IPF field days, ensuring broader engagement of the red meat industry.
Meat and Livestock Australia
University of Tasmania
Commissioning bodyMeat & Livestock Australia
Department/SchoolTasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA)
PublisherMeat & Livestock Australia
Place of publicationHobart, Tasmania