Filling the Research Gap - Modelling and farm systems research

​​​The following projects are being funded under round one and round two of Filling the Research Gap to undertake research to model agricultural greenhouse gas emissions and and whole of farm systems emissions.


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Potential soil carbon sequestration in Australian grain regions and its impact on soil productivity and greenhouse gas emissions—CSIRO — Enli Wang.

Funding of $639,283 ex GST (funded under round one from June 2012 to June 2015)

This project will define soil organic carbon (SOC) sequestration potential and identify management practices that benefit both productivity and SOC stocks. It will use the farming systems model APSIM (Agricultural Production Systems Simulator), together with measurements to identify agricultural practices that increase SOC, quantify SOC sequestration potential across Australian grain regions, assess the vulnerability of sequestered carbon to subsequent changes in management and climate, and investigate the impacts of SOC change on carbon-nitrogen cycling, productivity and greenhouse gas emissions.

Facilitation of improvement in systems modelling capacity for Carbon Farming Futures—CSIRO — Andrew Moore.

Funding of $629,816 ex GST (funded under round one from June 2012 to June 2015)

This project aims to eliminate any inconsistencies in modelling activities across Filling the Research Gap (FtRG). It will ensure that models are developed and applied consistently in FtRG, and that they embody the best scientific understanding of methane, nitrous oxide and soil carbon fluxes. A series of workshops and comparative studies will result in more robust and consistent abatement predictions and increased human capacity for modelling.

Whole farm systems analysis of greenhouse gas abatement options for the southern Australian grazing industries—The University of Melbourne — Richard Eckhard.

Funding of $537,902 ex GST (funded under round one from June 2012 to June 2015)

This project will conduct whole farm systems analysis of a range of nitrogen, carbon and energy efficiency and greenhouse gas abatement strategies for the dairy, sheep and southern beef industries. Each strategy will be analysed in a whole farm systems context, including methane, nitrous oxide, soil carbon, productivity plus the interactions between these. The outcomes from the project will be evaluated options: for reducing emissions intensity, improving farm profitability and/or further development into Carbon Farming Initiative offset methods.

Achieving least cost greenhouse gas abatement–opportunities in Australian grains farms—CSIRO.

Funding of $1,046,565 ex GST (funded under round two from July 2013 to June 2016)

This project is modelling scenarios to estimate mitigation benefits of various management practices applicable to Australian grain farms. The project will establish case-studies with farmer groups currently involved in the Action on the Ground program and other Grains Research and Development Corporation projects in major grain growing regions.

Impacts of Carbon Farming Initiative methodologies on whole-farm systems—The University of New England.

Funding of $532,613 ex GST (funded under round two from July 2013 to June 2016)

Assisted through international collaboration of researchers from the United States of America and New Zealand, this project is filling knowledge gaps about manipulation of methane production in the rumen. The project is quantifying emissions under different forage and nutritional regimes and is estimating changes in enterprise productivity resulting from potential rumen-based methodologies for the Carbon Farming Initiative.

Novel business structures for adaptation to a changing climate—University of Western Australia.

Funding of $226,162 ex GST (funded under round two from July 2013 to June 2016)

This project is examining how novel business structures can allow farm businesses to better adapt to a changing climate. The merits and feasibility of innovation in farm business structure will be assessed and widely communicated to farmer and investor forums to show the role and value of business structure innovation in facilitating farm adaptation to a changing climate.

Farm scale assessment of soil organic carbon from disaggregated national/regional scale models—University of Sydney.

Funding of $297,837 ex GST (funded under round two from July 2013 to June 2016)

This project is developing and validating tools that will enable farm-scale estimates of baseline soil organic carbon to be derived from nationally and/or regionally calibrated models. This research will be conducted in collaboration with Landcare Research New Zealand.