Agroforestry Systems

, Volume 87, Issue 3, pp 689–698 | Cite as

Preliminary carbon sequestration modelling for the Australian macadamia industry

  • Tim Murphy
  • Graham Jones
  • Jerry Vanclay
  • Kevin Glencross


There is a need to accurately estimate the carbon sequestration potential of many of our agricultural and horticultural industries now that the Australian Government has introduced the Carbon Farming Initiative and is planning to introduce an emissions trading scheme in 2015. This study estimates that the carbon sequestration of macadamia plantations is around 3t CO2e/ha/yr, and provides a methodology to assess the carbon footprint of the Australian Macadamia Industry. This study attempts to estimate the growth rate, and subsequently the sequestration rate of plantation grown Macadamia spp. through regression analysis of stem characteristics of destructively sampled Macadamia integrifolia var. 344. A volume increment curve was also derived using three common genetic varieties (A4, A16 & A42). This curve is used to extrapolate a carbon sequestration rate for the national macadamia plantation estate. Once volume estimates and sequestration rates are determined, an economic benefit of the carbon sequestration can be estimated by auditing the amount of carbon produced by activities such as “on farm” fuel use, fuel used in transport, and energy used in producing the product. In this way, a life cycle carbon budget can be developed that will aid the sustainable development of the macadamia and horticultural industries in Australia through the production of carbon credits from the carbon stored in the trees.


Carbon sequestration Macadamia industry Modelling Carbon markets Informing policy development 



This research has been greatly aided by help from Andrew Heap and Kim Jones (Australian Macadamia Society), Greg and Cliff James of Deenford Macadamia farm in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, and Peter Leihn from the NSW Greenhouse Gas Abatement Scheme/Green Power.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tim Murphy
    • 1
  • Graham Jones
    • 2
  • Jerry Vanclay
    • 1
  • Kevin Glencross
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Forestry, School of Environment, Science and EngineeringSouthern Cross UniversityNSWAustralia
  2. 2.School of Environment, Science and EngineeringSouthern Cross UniversityNSWAustralia

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