Exploring practical GHG mitigation options for New Zealand sheep & beef farms

Aim: Develop profitable dairy farming strategies that result in lower greenhouse gas emissions.

What does success look like?

Proven profitable strategies that minimize greenhouse gases.

How will we get there?

  1. GHG monitoring & measurements aligned with industry field trials (B+LNZ environment focus farm)

  2. Whole farm modelling to understand impacts of dierent farming practices on GHGs

  3. Development of key messages to assist extension work

What input is needed?

Science is needed to demonstrate and evaluate farming practices that minimize greenhouse gas emissions intensity.

Commercial input is needed to promote research and proven strategies via industry channels.

What's the timeline?

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Lead research partner

AgResearch Limited

Latest progress

"SHEEP AND BEEF WORK IDENTIFYING STRATEGIES TO REDUCE GHGS: The NZAGRC team are working with two B+LNZ monitor farms. The farms now have substantial, robust data and baseline farm systems models which demonstrate the extent to which the key management decisions and efficiency drivers impact on current emissions intensity. The farms are at very different points in development cycle, so provide useful perspectives for informing the wider industry.

Practice-change scenarios have been modelled to predict emissions intensity for Onetai station, a coastal sheep and beef farm in the King country. Scenarios incorporating increased fertiliser use and finishing more stock on farm have predicted a 20 to 38% improvement in emissions intensity is possible.

Scenarios modelled for Highlands (South Canterbury) monitor farm demonstrate the potential for a win-win solution when the area sown in Lucerne and Tall Fescue is increased. This enables more lambs to be finished earlier and results in a large a large effect on lowering emissions intensity. This scenario is assessed as being readily adoptable by farmers."

 

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