Cool Soils Project

Australian Cool Soils Initiative

Project Partners: Mars Petcare through the Sustainable Food Lab (USA), Kellogg’s, Manildra Group, Allied Pinnacle, Arytza, Riverine Plains, Central West Farming Systems, Charles Sturt University, Food Agility CRC.
Project Code: CFP20
Project Duration: 2018-2022
Project Location: FarmLink Region

Background

The Australian Cool Soils Initiative provides an avenue for growers to monitor and manage their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, while exploring how different farm practices can provide long-term carbon benefits. The primary objectives of the initiative are to develop a program that adds value for broadacre cropping farmers, invests in the long-term future of the industry, drives reductions in emissions and improves water use efficiency.
In 2018 Riverine Plains and Central West Farming Systems partnered with Mars Petcare to develop the Australian Cool Farm Initiative, to quantify GHG emissions from wheat production, and to identify ways to support farmers to reduce emissions, with a focus on soil health. Technical support was provided by the Sustainable Food Lab, an international agency that supports supply chain sustainability projects.
FarmLink joined the Cool Soils Initiative in 2020 to support peer learning within each region and assist farmers in trialling new practices and strategies. To calculate on-farm GHG emissions, participating farmers share paddock input data with their farming group, who anonymise the data before it is added to a collective dataset. An online greenhouse gas calculator, the Cool Farm Tool (coolfarmtool.org) quantifies on-farm emissions, and measures and track changes over time. The shared learning will help address the drivers, and barriers to adoption of farm management practices that mitigate carbon.

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