Some 55 per cent of Australia’s land mass is agricultural land, facing the twin challenges of declining arability per capita and increasing demand for food via population growth and changing consumption habits.
Within the broader natural capital asset class, agriculture continues to be crucial to the Australian economy, with ABARES forecasting the value of production to reach ~$80 billion in 2023–24. In this context, the CEFC invests alongside landowners to maximise the productive, sustainable use of natural capital assets, while also bringing in new sources of capital across diverse agricultural and land use activities.
Diverse investment approach
Our investments in natural capital range from large-scale investments in specialised funds, notably across the cropping and livestock sectors, to providing discounted finance for smaller-scale energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements in agriculture production. Increasingly, the CEFC is focusing on carbon offset, carbon sequestration and soil carbon opportunities in the agriculture sector.
As Australian corporates pursue their abatement targets, credible offsets from eligible land use activities will be required to address unavoidable emissions, providing important new opportunities for sustainably-focused agricultural activities. The CEFC role in convening capital and establishing and promoting best practice is critical to this fragmented sector.
Our investments reflect both the complexity and particular urgency of improving the sustainability and competitiveness of the Australian agriculture sector, in conjunction with measures to regenerate and improve land, water and biodiversity.
Closing the emissions gap – the critical role of carbon markets
In this thought-provoking Green Room webinar, the CEFC is joined by Qantas and CSIRO to discuss the demand and challenges for carbon offsets and the role of Australia’s natural capital in this emerging market.View the webinar
Natural capital – the missing piece of our net zero puzzle
Heechung Sung, Head of Natural Capital at the CEFC, discusses our greatest asset and the enormous potential for investors to diversify their portfolios, capture long-term returns and deliver positive environmental outcomes.Read our article
Investing for innovation in agriculture
Tenacious Ventures Co-founder Sarah Nolet outlines how she saw huge potential to create a dedicated specialist venture capital fund in agrifood tech to help commercialise world-class Australian agricultural research.Read our article
Plantation forests deliver growing future in carbon abatement
Read moreWe believe there is no credible pathway to net zero without investment in the forestry and land use sectors, and we are pleased both new and existing investors are taking an important step in continuing the transition to a sustainable future.David SheltonManaging Director Australia and New Zealand, New Forests
CDPQ, CEFC back $200m sustainable agriculture platform
Read moreThrough this partnership as part of our Sustainable Land Management strategy, we are reaffirming our commitment to investing alongside organisations that are truly moving the needle on sustainability in the agricultural sector by contributing to its decarbonisation.Emmanuel JaclotExecutive Vice-President and Head of Infrastructure. CDPQ
Wyuna promotes hybrid sustainable grazing model
Read moreThe Fund represents an incredible opportunity to support land regeneration, sustainable food production, and land-based solutions to remove carbon from the atmosphere by bringing together a dedicated team of farmers, investors and sustainability experts.Steve GreenCo-founder and CEO, Wyuna
Paraway Pastoral Company moves on Global Methane Pledge
Read moreProductivity, safety and sustainability all go hand in hand and pursuing new methods of sustainable production in Australian agriculture is a core principle of our approach.Harvey GaynorCEO, Paraway Pastoral Company
Downforce brings hi-tech soil solution to Australia
Read moreWe are delighted to have the support of the CEFC and all our investors as we look to grow and scale our ground-breaking platform. Using data and insights from Downforce, landowners and institutions can optimise their decision-making and investments, confidently and efficiently measuring the benefits as they build natural capital and revenues.Josephine WapakabuloDownforce CEO
Science-led sustainable farming initiative
Read moreAs agricultural asset managers for institutions there is complete transparency in our financial performance. What is ground-breaking here is that we have embedded the same accountability in the delivery of soil carbon, carbon in vegetation, emission reduction, biodiversity and other sustainability measures.Bradley WheatonPortfolio Manager, Gunn Agri