EPA/GWF ruling gives $100,000 boost to Regenerative Agriculture project
Posted on 1 September 2021 by e-news
Mount Alexander Sustainability Group is delighted to announce that it is the recipient of $100,000 under the direction of an order of the Magistrates Court. It is directed that it be used specifically on MASG’s Regenerative Agriculture project.
We believe that this was proposed by Don Smallgoods (GWF), with the support of the EPA, to the court as an acceptable outcome under 67AC of the Environment Protect Act. This was part of the penalty for an environmental breach by the Don Smallgoods (GWF) in 2019.
We understand that this was in accordance with EPA’s long-standing Inspiring Environmental Solutions (IES) program, which seeks flexible alternatives when imposing penalties in environmental prosecutions. Projects under consideration are scrutinised for suitability and must meet prescribed criteria: a demonstrable history of achievement, clear community benefits and verified credibility.
MASG’s only involvement in the selection of the project was to answer a question from GWF as to what projects we had that might fit the requirement. We listed a number, from which they chose to pursue Regenerative Agriculture as the most appropriate.
The Regenerative Agricultural project is federally funded under the National Landcare Programme (NLP) and administered by the North Central – Catchment Management Authority (NC CMA). MASG undertakes the local application of this programme.
MASG’s three-year Regenerative Agriculture Project has run successfully since 2019, working with over 70 farms and landholders. With funding due to cease in June 2022, this award ensures MASG’s work can continue for at least one additional year.
The goal of the Regenerative Agriculture Program is to increase awareness and support adoption of land management practices to improve and protect soil condition, biodiversity and vegetation.
Regenerative Agriculture has been identified as a critical means by which we can mitigate the consequences of climate change and develop greater resilience to the effects of global warming.
The donation, as directed by the court, will be allocated towards achieving the following objectives between 1 July 2022 and 30 June 2023.
• Facilitation of training sessions, education and guest speakers.
• Comprehensive soil carbon baseline testing.
• Implementation of appropriate land management practices (pasture and revegetation);
• Compliance with the Federal Government Carbon Farming Initiative; the opportunity to generate carbon credits.
• Purchasing of shared equipment resources.
• Support for sowing of multi-species cover crops.
• Program management and administration,
MASG estimates that this has the ability to involve 3,000 hectares across the region, sequestering approximately 300,000 tonnes of carbon over a ten-year period (all figures are indicative).
MASG will establish a steering committee with independent external partners to oversee the administration of the project. Regular updates will be here on the MASG website and any questions are welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org