The $21 million Historical Soil Data Capture Payments Program is a key measure under the National Soil Package. The program pays farmers and land managers to share their historical soil test data with the Australian Government.
Farmers and land managers may be eligible to receive payments up to $10,000 in exchange for sharing their historical soil information through the program.
The department has engaged a panel of data brokers to engage with data owners, collate soil test data, and share the data with the Australian Government.
The Program will be open from April 2022 to 30 June 2023.
To request more information or to participate in this Program, contact one of the four data brokers:
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Sign up for more information on the National Soil Strategy.
Participating in the Program
A data owner can be a farmer, land manager or an entity that owns soil data.
To be eligible, all applicants must be based in Australia and be Australian citizens. Applicants will need to have full ownership of the intellectual property (IP) rights for the historic soil data.
In addition, all applicants must comply with the following participation requirements:
- agree to sign the data sharing agreement (Data Sharing Deed) required by the Commonwealth to share soil information on the Australian National Soil Information System
- complete a qualitative survey with information about land and management practices to help administer the program (this information will not be published on ANSIS or be linked to a data owner’s soil information).
Data owners can receive payment based on the number of soil properties (i.e. physical, chemical and biological soil characteristics) tested per sample as follows:
- $50 – 5 soil properties
- $100 – between 6 and 10 soil properties
- $150 – between 11 and 15 soil properties
- $200 – more than 16 soil properties
Each business or individual can receive up to $10,000 in total. If a business or individual has data valued at more than $10,000, the data broker will assist in prioritising what data sets the department is most interested in accessing.
Data brokers will source good quality historical data that has been tested in a certified laboratory in Australia before 1 January 2022. It will need to have qualifying metadata such as geolocation (latitude/longitude), collection/analysis date/time, and have a minimum of 5 tested soil properties.
More technical information about soil data standards can be found in SITES v2 or by engaging with a data broker.
Data owners interested in sharing data, can get in touch with a data broker (listed on this page) to assist with assessing data eligibility and options to share historical soil data for payments.
Data brokers will help:
- Determine the quality of data, and the price to be paid
- Sign a commercial agreement to receive payment and acknowledge the transaction
- Sign a data sharing agreement allowing the Data Broker to access data and to share it with the Commonwealth
- Complete a qualitative survey to help administer the Program.
To participate in this program, data owners will need to enter into a Data Sharing Agreement with the data broker which will outline how the data broker and Commonwealth can use your data. Data owners will receive a payment via a separate commercial arrangement with the data broker.
The Data Sharing Agreement will protect data owner rights by not sharing personal details. Data owners’ actual georeferenced soil information will be stored ‘out of sight’ of the public. Only the data owners aggregated soil information will be publicly available.
Certain organisations like government or non-government organisations will be able to apply to access this georeferenced data for specific purposes, like research. Access to this level of data will be closely managed in line with data use agreements with those parties.
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Data use and privacy
Historical soil information will help build a better understanding of the condition and health of Australia’s soil spatially and over time to assist in better targeted soil research, policy and programs.
The Data Sharing Agreement outlines how data owner’s soil information can and cannot be used. Farmers and landholders interested in participating in the program should discuss the terms and conditions of this agreement with a data broker. Soil information collated through this program cannot be used for any compliance or prosecution activities.
Personal information (such as name and contact details) will not be uploaded to or linked to soil information on ANSIS.
Any personal information is collected for the purpose of the department verifying eligibility and program administration.
Participants retain ownership of their soil information.
The Data Sharing Agreement gives the Commonwealth perpetual permission to access, store and use soil information in accordance with the terms outlined in the data sharing deed.