Sustainable farming practices make good business sense. Many New Zealand farmers are already noticing the effects of climate change, and working on reducing greenhouse gas emissions in their farm activities.
Opportunities to reduce their impact and adapt to climate change, for farmers and lifestyle block owners alike, include:
- grazing cattle less intensively to protect pasture quality and reduce methane emissions
- more efficient use of fertiliser to ensure the excess doesn’t leach into soil and waterways
- planting trees to stabilise marginal hill country, and help absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere
- fencing off waterways and doing riparian planting, to create habitats for native plants and animals.
NRC can help with projects that improve water quality and erosion control. The Environment Fund can contribute to the cost of fencing and planting, while its Flyger Road nursery sells poplar and willow poles for erosion control at a subsidised price.
Learn ways to reduce your waste and pollution on the farm at: www.nrc.govt.nz/farmmanagement
Need some inspiration? Kaeo farmers Jeff Martin and Helen Linssen, 2020 Regional Supreme Winners in the Northland Ballance Farm Environment Awards, talk about embracing everything from planting to smart technology in this case study.
NZ Sustainable Farming, an organic-certified dairy and crop farm near Waipū, won the industry award at NRC’s 2021 Environmental Awards. Their best-practice, sustainable farming ensures that neither profit nor the environment are sacrificed on the road to success.