MPI invites research proposals to measure New Zealand’s agricultural greenhouse gas emissions

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13 July 2022, NZ: The annual funding round for the Ministry for Primary Industries’ (MPI’s) Greenhouse Gas Inventory Research fund opens on 14 July, with $2.1 million on offer.  

“We’re seeking research proposals to maintain and improve our agriculture, forestry and land-use inventory,” says Steve Penno, MPI’s director of investment programmes. 

“The inventory calculates and records greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture in New Zealand, as well as carbon sequestration from forests.  

“It will be used to account for mitigation technologies as they are developed and implemented on farms in New Zealand. 

“It’s also an important tool in enabling New Zealand’s reporting to the New Zealand Greenhouse Gas Inventory and the United Nations under the Paris Climate Agreement.”

Steve Penno says this year MPI is seeking proposals on 9 priority areas, ranging from methane to the effects of plants on emissions. 

“Accurate information is essential for developing policy and verifying that we’re on the right track in efforts across Aotearoa to reduce agricultural emissions,” says Mr Penno. 

“The fund provides a point of focus and coordination for world-leading climate change research.”

Through Budget 2022 the Government committed $339 million through the Climate Emergency Response Fund to accelerate development and uptake of high-impact agricultural mitigation technologies. Of this, $1.5 million was added to the Greenhouse Gas Inventory Research fund for 2022/23, taking available funding to $2.1 million for new projects over the next 12 months.  

Mr Penno says the fund also contributes to world-wide efforts to drive down agricultural emissions. 

“As one of the only developed countries with a largely pasture-based agricultural economy, we’re also able to share our research outcomes with less developed countries with similar agricultural sectors to boost their knowledge,” says Mr Penno. 

“The research generated through this fund provides us with invaluable baseline data to continue efforts to mitigate New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture.  

“It goes hand-in-hand with the goals of the Government and sector roadmap Fit for a Better World, a key part of which is retaining our position as a global leader in producing high quality food and fibre, while reducing the sector’s carbon footprint.”

The Greenhouse Gas Inventory Research funding round is open from 14 July to 12 August. Successful proposals are expected to be announced in October. 

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