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The Bioeconomic Potential for Agroforestry in Australia’s Northern Grazing Systems

Donaghy, Peter, Bray, Steven, Gowen, Rebecca, Rolfe, John, Stephens, Michael, Hoffmann, Madonna, Stunzer, Anne
Small-scale forestry 2010 v.9 no.4 pp. 463-484
bioeconomic models, carbon markets, carbon sequestration, forest yields, grazing, greenhouse gas emissions, land management, livestock, methane, rain, silvopastoral systems, tree growth, Australia
Although agriculture generates 16% of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions, it also has the potential to sequester large quantities of emissions through land use management options such as agroforestry. Whilst there is an extensive amount of agroforestry literature, little has been written on the economic consequences of adopting silvopastoral systems in northern Australia. This paper reports the financial viability of adopting complementary agroforestry systems in the low rainfall region of northern Australia. The analysis incorporates the dynamic tradeoffs between tree and pasture growth, likely forest product yields, carbon sequestration and livestock methane emissions in a bioeconomic model. The results suggest there are financial benefits for landholders who integrate complementary agroforestry activities into existing grazing operations at even modest carbon prices.