The Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources (the Department) is preparing to release an update to the Full Carbon Accounting Model (FullCAM) for public use from 1 September 2020. FullCAM is used to construct Australia’s national greenhouse gas emissions account for the land sector and must be used for some vegetation method projects in the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF). Any new projects which apply to be registered under the ERF from 1 September must use the 2020 FullCAM option.
A pre-release version of FullCAM software and draft FullCAM Guidelines are available now for preview. The Department is inviting initial comments on the draft Guidelines by 11:59PM, Friday 12 June 2020 (AEST).
A public consultation period on the draft Guidelines will follow in July 2020.
More information on the forthcoming update, including how to make a submission on the draft guidelines, can be found on the Department’s website.
If you have answered yes to these questions, the reforestation by environmental or mallee plantings method
may be suitable for your business.
A reforestation by environmental or mallee plantings project involves establishing and maintaining vegetation such as trees or shrubs on land that has been clear of forest for at least five years. You can plant either a mix of trees, shrubs and understory species native to the local area or species of mallee eucalypts.
The project helps to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas entering the atmosphere, because carbon is stored in the trees as they grow. The carbon stored in the trees, shrubs and debris on site is called the carbon stock, while the term abatement refers to the overall reduction in greenhouse gases as a result of a project.
The carbon stock held in the project's trees, shrubs and debris (dead plant material) is calculated using a computer modelling tool called the Full Carbon Accounting Model (FullCAM). The net amount of abatement during a project's reporting period is then determined by subtracting emissions due to fires and fuel use from the amount of carbon stock. The resulting net abatement for the project can then be used to apply for Australian carbon credit units (ACCUs).
As a sequestration activity, that is, an activity that stores carbon in vegetation or soil, a reforestation by environmental or mallee plantings project is subject to a 'permanence obligation'. This means the project must be maintained 'permanently' (for a nominated period of either 100 or 25 years).
Section 114 of the
Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Act 2011 (the Act) allows for methods to be revised and varied. This is to ensure methods continue to operate as originally intended. Variations to methods are developed and drafted by the Department of the Environment and Energy. Information on
draft methods and method variations is available on the Department of the Environment and Energy’s website.
The Clean Energy Regulator recommends making yourself familiar with proposed method variations relevant to your project should they arise, and how any changes between the original method and the varied method may affect your project plan.
You must read and understand the method and other legislative requirements to conduct a reforestation by environmental or mallee plantings project and earn ACCUs. This includes:
The quick reference guide provides basic information about eligibility criteria and obligations that must be met to earn ACCUs from a reforestation by environmental or mallee plantings project. It includes links to the legislation, but should not be viewed as an alternative to reading the full legislative requirements.
Twenty-five years – The crediting period is the period of time a project can apply to claim Australian carbon credit units (ACCUs).
Find this part in the latest version of the Act:
There are general eligibility requirements in the Act, which include:
Projects can be run in any area of Australia with FullCAM modelling data, and plantings must be established on land that has been clear of forest cover for at least five years previously.
Part 2 of the method requires that specific information is included in a project application before the project can be considered eligible. You should ensure you refer to this part and provide all the required information.
Find these sections in the latest determination of the Method:
A project involves establishing and maintaining vegetation such as trees or shrubs on land that has been clear of forest for at least the last five years. This can be either a:
Trees can be planted as either seeds or tubestock, in rows or randomly, and in areas that are either linear belts or blocks. They must be planted at a density that will allow them to achieve forest cover, which means they must have the potential to reach a height of at least two metres and provide crown cover over at least 20 per cent of the land.
You must identify the area in which your project will occur using the Long Term Average Rainfall Map Layer and the
CFI Mapping Guidelines. The area is then divided, or stratified, into a combination of two different zones:
Click for further information about
Find these parts in the latest determination of the Method:
Find these parts in the latest determination of the Method:
Abatement is calculated using a computer modelling tool called the Full Carbon Accounting Model (FullCAM). Projects following this method are to use the version of FullCAM and FullCAM Guidelines available on the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment's website
at the time of submitting a project report to the Clean Energy Regulator.
FullCAM uses a variety of settings, called calibrations, to model the amount of carbon stored in different types of plantings. Schedule 1 in the method explains that plantings can fall under either a range of specific calibrations or a generic calibration.
The data used as inputs to FullCAM include:
A full explanation of how to use FullCAM to model the amount of carbon stored by your project can be found on the
Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment's website..
The net amount of abatement is determined by subtracting emissions due to fires and fuel use from the amount of carbon stored in the project's trees, shrubs and debris (dead plant material).
In addition to the reporting requirements of the Act and the Rule, Division 5.4 of the method also sets out method-specific requirements for the first and subsequent reports. The information you are required to provide includes:
Find this part in the latest version of the Rule:
Find this part in the latest determination of the Method:
In addition to the general monitoring requirements of the Act, Section 5.3 of the method describes specific monitoring requirements. These include using on-ground observation and/or remote-sensing imagery to:
In addition to the record-keeping requirements of the Act and the Rule, Division 5.3 of the method describes specific record-keeping requirements. These include keeping records related to:
Relevant section of the Act:
Relevant section of the Rule:
Relevant section of the Method:
All projects receive an audit schedule when the project is declared and must provide audit reports according to this schedule. A minimum of three audits will be scheduled and additional audits may be triggered. For more information on the audit requirements, see the Act, the Rule and the
audit information on our website.
To ensure the required level of accuracy of the inputs to FullCAM for calculating carbon stock, it may be necessary to seek assistance from a technical expert. You should consider the cost of this service before deciding to run a project.
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