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US Agriculture Secretary upbeat about climate legislation impact.

Mick Keogh - Friday, July 24, 2009

US Climate change legislation could deliver a net $US 1 billion increase in annual revenue for US farmers by 2015, increasing to $20 billion a year by 2050, according to recent testimony by US Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to the US Senate Agriculture Committee. View the rest of the post here

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UK carbon plan will provide agricultural incentives.

Mick Keogh - Thursday, July 23, 2009

The UK Government has released its Low Carbon Transition Plan, spelling out how it will achieve future greenhouse emission reductions. In the Chapter on agriculture, the UK Government notes that there are limits to the emission reduction that can be achieved in complex biloogical systems such as agriculture, and also the need to balance a desire to reduce agriculture-sector emissions against a future need to produce food for a growing world population. View the rest of the post here

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Will US farm carbon income be used to replace existing subsidies?

Mick Keogh - Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Will the promised new carbon offset revenue to be received by US farmers simply replace existing farm subsidies, and leave US farmers worse off because of higher input costs? This was foreshadowed in a speech US Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack made earlier this year, when he urged farmers to look at climate legislation as a potential opportunity, while at the same time warning them that the generous subsidies available under the US Farm Bill would come under considerable pressure.  View the rest of the post here

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US Climate Change Bill “No big deal” for agriculture.

Mick Keogh - Sunday, July 19, 2009

Iowa State University agricultural academic Bruce Babcock believes the impact of the proposed US climate change legislation on US farmers will be minor. US agriculture seems to be much better treated by their proposed legislation than will be the case in Australia. View the rest of the post here

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New Zealand livestock industries concerned about ETS

Mick Keogh - Friday, July 10, 2009

Meat and Wool New Zealand has urged the NZ government to give full consideration to environmental and economic implications in setting a 202 emission target for the nation. Chairman Mike Petersen spelled out the potentially large implications for New Zealand livestock farmers of an aggressive emission target, and also highlighted that few other nations around the world are even considering including agriculture in an ETS. View the rest of the post here

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Just how much warming does methane cause?

Mick Keogh - Thursday, July 09, 2009

Several recent articles published in Australia and internationally have focused on the role of methane in global warming, and in particular the role of methane from ruminant livestock. A recent piece in the New Scientist argues that the Global Warming Potential of methane (methane is allocated a GWP of 21 or 23 by the IPCC) is understated because it has a much higher warming potential (above 70) for the short period (10-12 years) that it stays in the atmosphere, and that there should be a much greater focus on reducing methane emissions instead of carbon dioxide emissions. View the rest of the post here

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US Agriculture secretary promotes agriculture offsets

Mick Keogh - Wednesday, July 08, 2009

US Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has strongly promoted the role of agricultural offsets provided by US farmers (such as changes to no-til cropping or perennial pastures) as a key element of the US cap and trade climate change legislation currently being considered by Committees of the US Senate. The Committee hearing are a preliminary step in the process of developing a final form of the legislation that will be voted on by the Senate later this year. View the rest of the post here

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NZ Trade Minister on Trade, food security, climate conflicts.

Mick Keogh - Tuesday, July 07, 2009

NZ Conservation and Trade Minister Tim Groser has highlighted the potentially conflicting climate and trade agendas that are in play at present as attempts are made to finalise the Doha trade round at the same time that multi-lateral climate change negotiations reach a critical point with the Copenhagen negotiations that are set to conclude in December, 2009. View the rest of the post here

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US unlikely to ratify international climate treaty

Mick Keogh - Monday, July 06, 2009

Based on a report on Bloomberg, the USA may never ratify an international climate treaty, irrespective of the fate of US Climate legislation, because treaty ratification requires a two-thirds majority in the US Senate. This suggests that US agriculture may never face the problems Australian agriculture has with the euro-centric emissions accounting rules that preclude the inclusion of many agricultural sequestration activities being recognised in national greenhouse inventories. View the rest of the post here

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US farmers get a different climate deal to Australian farmers.

Mick Keogh - Friday, July 03, 2009

A quick comparison of Climate change legislation proposed in Australia and the USA shows the stark difference between the proposed treatment of US agriculture under the Waxman-Markey legislation, and Australia's CPRS legislation. View the rest of the post here

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