Skip to content

Reducing Emissions in the Land Sector: A Case Study of Australia

Elena Aydos, Kelsey Gray


This paper provides an overview of Australia’s main climate policy in the land sector, the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF). Section II analyses Australia’s historical role and participation in international climate agreements, as well as the country’s past and present emissions reduction targets. It concludes that while Australia’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement lacks ambition, States and Territories are taking the lead and adopting more stringent emission reduction targets domestically. Section III introduces an important climate policy that preceded the ERF, consisting of a mandatory emissions trading scheme which lasted two years and was originally linked to a domestic voluntary offsets scheme in the land sector, the Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI). With the dismantling of the emissions trading scheme, the CFI was reformed, and the ERF was implemented. Section IV presents the main features of the ERF and its outcomes to date. Section V briefly contrasts the ERF with other federal initiatives, including the National Reserve System. The paper argues that not only is the ERF costly and unsustainable, but it has also been ineffective in reaching meaningful emissions reductions in the land sector since its implementation.

Elena Aydos, Senior Lecturer, Newcastle Law School, University of Newcastle, Australia; Kelsey Gray, Bachelor of Laws (Honours)/Bachelor of Science (Biology) candidate, University of Newcastle.


Lx-Number Search

(e.g. A | 000123 | 01)

Export Citation