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The week's news and insights from the National Farmers' Federation
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Welcome to the NFF’s Weekly Wrap, bringing you the week’s farming and political news each Friday.
Headlines
Annual report card on agriculture's $100 billion goal out next week
Agriculture has remained strong despite the challenges of COVID-19, thanks largely to drought-breaking rains. This is the headline of the NFF's 2020 Report Card, an assessment on progress towards the sector's $100 billion goal. The NFF will hold a webinar outlining highlights from this year's Report Card at midday on Wednesday 9 December. Click here to join (no pre-registration required).
Farmers and tourism operates say bring back backpackers
The NFF has teamed up with the tourism sector to call for a COVID safe restart of the Working Holiday Maker Program. Backpackers inject $3.2bn into the economy each year with up to 200,000 backpackers working farm jobs before spending their cash as tourists, often in regional towns.
Agriculture in the box seat for a reduced emissions future
Emissions from cropping and grazing have fallen by 69 per cent over the past three decades, from about 300 million tonnes per year in 1990 to about 92 million tonnes today. The NFF today commended the Federal Government’s suite of climate change action measures that will help ensure farmers continue to be a leaders in the mitigation of climate change. Read more about an expansion of Australia's Emissions Reduction Fund, in the Briefing below.
Celebrating the best in rural journalism
Freelance photographer Sean Davey was named the National Rural Press Club's 2020 Overall Winner and took home the award for best photo for his stark and confronting image of a farmer near Cobargo, NSW shooting a calf on new year's day after bushfires tore through his property. Mr Davey was joined in the winners list by a cohort of talented journalists reporting on important rural issues including drought, water and labour shortages.
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Weekly insight
Bin buster! 2020 harvest set to be one for the record books
National grain yields are forecast to tally 51.5 million tonnes, according to a report released by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics’ this week. The ABARES December Crop Report revealed that this year is shaping up to be second only to the record 56.7 million tonnes reached in 2016–17.

Source: ABARES, 2020
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Briefing
Government announces an expansion of Emissions Reductions Fund

Energy &Β Emissions Reduction Minister, Angus Taylor today announced an expansion of the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) Β to help unlock further abatement across the economy

Minister Taylor announced the Government would prioritise method development in five key areas:

  • Soil carbon – storing carbon in agricultural soil by undertaking new land management practices and reducing costs of measuring soil carbon;
  • carbon capture and storage – capturing carbon dioxide and storing it underground in geological formations;
  • biomethane (green gas) – injecting refined biogases into gas pipelines for use by natural gas consumers;
  • plantation forestry – building on the existing method to include new opportunities; and
  • blue carbon – reintroducing tidal flows to restore mangroves and tidal marshes.

The methodologies are designed to support businesses in the manufacturing, industrial and land sectors to invest in low emissions technologies to unlock energy and emissions savings.

The Regulator will work with industry to co-design priority methods and will finalise these methods within 12 months. It will publicly report on method development progress.
Quote of the week
β€œ If you know a farmer, he or she will be a lot happier to talk to,"

- MUNGINDI FARMER, SAM HEAGNEY ON THIS
YEAR'S BUMPER GRAIN HARVEST
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Sent by the National Farmers' Federation, NFF House, 14-16 Brisbane Avenue, Barton ACT 2600
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