VG08107 – Carbon Footprint part 2 – issues

This paper considers how carbon footprinting will address the issues of reduction, mitigation, emissions trading and marketing for the Australia vegetable industry.

Markus Deurer
Brent Clothier

Andrea Pickering

How will carbon footprinting address
the issues of reduction, mitigation, emissions trading and marketing - September 2008
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Conclusions and recommendations :

  • Consumers, retailers, businesses, and governments are focussing increasingly on greenhouse gas emissions as the spectre of climate change looms large.

  • The imperatives of these four groups have established the need to determine and reduce the size of the GHG footprint associated with products and activities.

  • Consumers are seeking information about the GHG emissions of the products they purchase. In response, retailers are requiring GHG footprints, or scorecards, of products so that they can modify their purchase decisions and allow shelf-access to products with lower emissions.

  • Businesses are seeing marketing advantage of being able to report their GHG emissions, and move towards carbon neutrality.

  • Governments, as signatories to international treaties are committed, on pain of penalties, to reduce their nation’s emissions.

  • Countries are using emissions trading schemes to provide incentives that will reduce their carbon footprint.

  • Agriculture is destined to join the Australian Carbon Pollution reduction Scheme in 2015. Many forms of GHG footprinting exist, and there are a number of protocols.

  • It is a rapidly evolving and presently confusing area of activity: business, regulation, and science.

  • What is not confusing is that it will be inevitable that GHG footprinting will be required at some time, for some purpose.

  • The vegetable industry should develop a plan to ensure that it, and its growers, can collect and record the necessary information to meet the requirements for reporting its GHG footprint.

Acknowledgments :

Funding was provided by Australian vegetable growers (through the R & D levy) and Horticulture Australia Limited. The Australian Government provides matched funding for all HAL’s R&D activities.

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