Climate Change Research Grants 2007/08

More than $5 million has been allocated to fund the first tranche of research proposals through the Plan of Action for Sustainable Land Management and Climate Change.

More than 80 proposals totalling $12 million were received in response to a request for proposals - nearly two and a half times the funding available. Of these, 45 proposals from 25 organisations were successful.

The successful bids focus on research to help the land-based sectors both to reduce their impact on climate change - known as mitigation - and build the capability and resilience of the agricultural and forestry sectors to adapt to a changing climate. Other research proposals aimed to develop capability and infrastructure within the agriculture, forestry and horticulture sectors.

The full list and final reports of the successful research proposals are below.

Forestry Sector Research

To read the Executive Summary or download the full report for each proposal please click on title name.

Title Organisation
Forest and forest land valuation: How to value forests and forest land to include carbon costs and benefits?
Goal: Developing a theoretically robust but practically applicable methodology for valuing forests and forest land in New Zealand in the presence of carbon pricing.
ISCR - NZ Institute for the Study of Competition and Regulation
$100,000/$125,000
The effect of climate change on New Zealand's planted forests: impacts, risks and opportunities
Goal: Evaluation of the impact and direct effect of climate change on the productivity of New Zealand's planted forest systems.
Scion
$175,000/$200,000
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA): adopting and/or adapting overseas LCA data and methodologies for building materials in New Zealand
Goal: Developing datasets for New Zealand building materials using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) studies of timber and other buildings. The results of this project, in combination with the greenhouse gas foot-printing research for the forestry sector, will lay the basis for fair comparisons of different building types.
Scion
$100,000/$125,000
Forest management for carbon and carbon price risk
Goal: Identifying how New Zealand forest management practices should change to manage the uncertainty around carbon trading and carbon price dynamics.
Scion
$175,000/$200,000
Carbon trading and forestry decision making, carbon accounting and forest growth rates
Goal: Research and analysis to underpin and support climate change policy implementation, forest management decision-making and future policy development. Build future capacity by having final year BForSc students carry out basic analysis as Management Case Studies.
University of Canterbury
$250,000/$300,000
Forest risk management strategies - how can forest owners manage risk and uncertainty associated with carbon prices?
Goal: To identify key risks for forest managers in New Zealand for participation in a domestic ETS, to discuss the effect of these risks on viability of forestry businesses, and to assess management strategies to deal with these risks.
URS New Zealand Ltd
Less than $50,000
Total funding for this category $957,905

Cross Sectoral/Integration Research

Title Organisation
Carbon stocks and change in NZs soils and forests - implications post-2012 of offsets and mitigation opportunities.
Goal: Determine the implications for NZ of post-2012 Kyoto accounting options for Land Use, Land-use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) - identify and prioritise the knowledge gaps and uncertainties that most limit the reliability of the LULUCF component of forecasts of NZ's net emissions position.
Landcare Research
$350,000/$400,000
Social dynamics of emissions trading scenarios in NZ's pastoral sector: New Zealand pastoral farmers and the mitigation of greenhouse gases in the agricultural sector
Goal: Assessing risks and opportunities of engagement in carbon markets from the direct perspective of pastoral farmers.
Agricultural Research Group on Sustainability (ARGOS) - University of Otago
$50,000/$75,000
Information, decision and action: the factors that determine farmers' environmental behaviour
Goal: To establish the social, psychological and other factors that determine farmers' different responses to environmental change. In particular, to determine why some farmers implement land management policies for long-term sustainability while others remain more resistant to change.
Auckland UniServices Ltd
Less than $50,000
Total funding for this category $655,975

Adaptation Mechanisms to Cope with Climate Change

Title Organisation
Learning from past adaptation to extreme climatic events: a case study of drought
Goal: Traditionally, New Zealand pastoral farmers have adapted their farming systems in response to extreme climatic events. This project will research these responses to provide information on how farmers could (and should) adapt to the extreme climatic events that may result from climate change. While this study will focus on the case study of drought, a methodology will be developed that can also be applied to flooding and cyclone damage - or other expected negative impacts of climate change.
AgResearch
$50,000/$75,000
Improved field facilities to study climate change impacts and adaptations in pasture
Goal: To complete the design and testing of a passive warming system that will be added to an existing experiment. With this addition we will have available an experimental facility capable of simulating field carbon dioxide and temperature conditions expected in 25-30 years time.
AgResearch
$50,000/$75,000
Enhanced modelling capability to conduct impact assessments
Goal: To enhance capability to do comprehensive climate impact studies for pastoral agriculture in New Zealand by developing procedures to link climate files from NIWA with biogeochemical models and to put these biophysical outputs into farm systems models.
AgResearch
$50,000/$75,000
Adaptation vulnerability and impacts of climate change on NZ's pastoral systems
Goal: Testing new methodology in two catchments to quantify the potential impact of climate change on the capacity of groundwater and surface water resources to meet agricultural needs.
Aqualinc Research Ltd
$75,000/$100,000
Vulnerability of New Zealand pastoral farming to the impacts of future climate change and changes in the soil water regime
Goal: Development of a methodology and software tool for assessing the sensitivity of rain-fed pastoral production at the regional scale to future climate change impacts on the soil water regime.
Auckland UniServices Ltd
$50,000/$75,000
Forage crop opportunities as a result of climate change
Goal: Identify the major opportunities that climate change brings to extend the growing season and achieve a step change in cumulative forage crop yields via radical changes in forage germplasm and management.
Crop & Food Research
$50,000/$75,000
Impact of climate change on drought and agricultural production
Goal: To establish end-user requirements for information and advice on how climate change is likely to affect drought and agricultural production in New Zealand and to establish methodologies and timelines required to develop appropriate updated analyses based on the latest climate change scenarios.
NIWA
$50,000/$75,000
Climate change risks to pastoral production systems
Goal: To determine whether additional evidence supports the initial observation that NZ's pastoral production systems may have a substantially reduced ability to cope with environmental stress under elevated CO2 conditions likely to be encountered with global change.
Landcare Research
Less than $50,000
Adaptation - developing case studies in the kiwifruit industry
Goal: To provide a platform for capacity development and action on adapting to climate change throughout New Zealand by developing case studies in the kiwifruit industry.
Earthwise Consulting Limited
$50,000/$75,000
Total funding for this category $527,013

Mitigation of Agricultural Emissions

Title Organisation
Fermentation systems for rapid and accurate modelling of rumen function
Goal: To construct a 'state of the art' continuous flow fermentation system for use by rumen microbiologists/rumen nutritionists in order to speed up work on developing mitigation solutions for enteric methane emissions from ruminants.
Agresearch/grants/PGGRC
$225,000/$250,000
Manipulating rumen fermentation for lower methane emissions
Goal: Developing better methods for culturing rumen bacteria, to make them available for more detailed investigation. Understanding these bacteria is important if we wish to manipulate the rumen fermentation towards pathways that produce less methane.
AgResearch
$50,000/$75,000
Ruminant methane-extension of the animal calorimetry facility at AgResearch Grasslands
Goal: Construction of four sheep calorimeters and a prototype calorimeter for cattle to provide New Zealand with world class facilities for the rapid and highly accurate measurement of methane emissions from forage fed ruminants.
Agresearch/grants/PGGRC
$225,000/$250,000
Rapid assessment of nitrous oxide
Goal: Building up to automated nitrous oxide gas chambers that will be added to an existing automated and mobile gas analysis system to provide a fully automated system for rapid assessment of in-field nitrous oxide emissions.
AgResearch
$150,000/$175,000
Assessing the role of dietary carbohydrate to protein ratios on greenhouse gas emissions from pastoral agriculture
Goal: Measure the effect of changes in dietary water soluble carbohydrate (WSC) to crude protein (CP) ratios on greenhouse gas emissions from ruminants to determine the level of expression of the high WSC trait in grasses required to bring about significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from New Zealand pastoral agriculture.
Agresearch/grants/PGGRC
$100,000/$125,000
Development of a urine sensor to measure urinary nitrogen concentrations in situ
Goal: To test the concept that modifications to an existing urine sensor will allow the quantification of urinary nitrogen concentration of individual urination events by grazing sheep. Future use of this tool may then enable quantification of nitrogen load in urine patches which is the precursor of nitrous oxide emissions.
AgResearch
$125,000/$150,000
Quantifying the variability of the effectiveness of nitrification inhibitors on nitrous oxide emissions
Goal: Improving the confidence in the effectiveness of the nitrification inhibitor DCD as a novel nitrous oxide mitigation technology in a wider range of key dairying soils and as affected by rainfall or irrigation.
AgResearch
$125,000/$150,000
Significance of wetlands in the agricultural landscape as sources of nitrous oxide emissions
Goal: To assess whether wetlands in the agricultural landscape receiving nitrogen-rich leachate are a significant source of nitrous oxide emissions in relation to inventory estimates on nitrous oxide emitted from agriculture.
Diffuse Sources Ltd
$75,000/$100,000
Soil methanotrophy - a novel methane mitigation technology
Goal: To develop novel mitigation technologies to reduce net enteric and manure methane emissions in New Zealand.
Landcare Research
Less than $50,000
Nitrous oxide - novel mitigation methodologies
Goal: To identify novel mitigation strategies for reducing nitrous oxide emissions from ruminant urine patches and to identify the microbial nitrous oxide emission pathway affected by the mitigation strategy.
Lincoln University
$175,000/$200,000
Alternative methods of direct rumen methane assessment
Goal: Pilot project to develop the use of a contemporary methane sensor with data logging capacity in situ in the rumen of a dairy cows on the Lincoln University Dairy Farm.
Lincoln University
Less than $50,000
Diagnostic tests for greenhouse gas production
Goal: Exploring diagnostic measurements using readily accessible samples to provide indices of both methane production and nitrogen-use efficiency for individual cows and herds.
Lincoln University
Less than $50,000
Methane from animal waste management systems
Goal: Identification, quantification, modelling and economic assessment of options for the management of poultry, piggery and dairy waste to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions via anaerobic digestion and associated biogas utilisation for energy generation.
MWH New Zealand Ltd
$100,000/$125,000
Improving the sheep component of the methane model and provide management strategies for farmers to reduce methane production
Goal: Develop a predictive lifetime feed intake model for sheep to enable sensitivity testing of different on-farm genetic and management technologies for methane mitigation.
On-Farm Research Ltd
Less than $50,000
Total funding for this category $1,831,610

Sustainable Farming Fund Community Based Projects

Title Organisation
Adapting to a drier environment by improving irrigation practices
Goal: To increase the uptake of existing irrigation practices and tools by dairy farmers, particularly in areas where water restrictions are likely to be enforced. Farmers will be instructed on the application and benefits of a number of irrigation tools so that they can assess them on-farm and select the best tools for their individual circumstances. The expected outcome is improved irrigation efficiency.
Irrigated Dairy Farmers Group
$200,000/$225,000
Sustainable Water Use Indicators for Grape and Wine Production 1: Irrigation
Goal: To develop indicators that enable viticulturists to self assess their water use efficiency. These will be included in the Sustainable winegrowers programme, enabling individuals to measure their performance against industry bench marks and the industry to monitor its overall performance around water efficiency.
NZ Winegrowers through Sustainable Winegrowing NZ
Less than $50,000
Dairy supplements to reduce N2O and increase milk protein yield
Goal: To investigate the effect of strategic supplementation of low-protein feeds on the efficiency of feed-nitrogen assimilation in cows, with the aim of reducing urinary N losses per cow per hectare per kg of milk solid.
Canterbury Dairy Supplements Group
$200,000/$225,000
Spatial mapping of soil water holding capacity to improve irrigation efficiency for pastoral farms
Goal: To develop site-specific irrigation management (or the ability to do so) by developing GPS and electromagnetic induction technology to produce detailed maps of the soil variability (within, and between paddocks and under centre pivot irrigators) The potential is to improve an irrigator's ability to target application volumes to specific soil characteristics for an overall improvement in efficiency
Canterbury/ North Otago Irrigated Pastoral Farmers
$250,000/300,000
Developing a climate change strategy for the NZ Arable Industry
Goal: FAR believe that there is a low awareness among arable farmers about the impact of Climate Change on their farming systems. The project will develop a strategy for the arable industry, including research and extension around 4 main Climate Change objectives; mitigation, adaptation, GHG life cycle analysis and business opportunities. The programme will be developed through a consultative process with farmers.
Foundation for Arable Research
Less than $50,000
Grazing strategies and stand-off pad use to minimise nitrogen derived emissions from dairy farms
Goal: To develop guidelines for the use of stand-off facilities, to enable dairy farmers to mitigate on-farm nitrogen derived emissions. The project is part of the Dairy NZ strategy for developing environmentally sustainable and responsible dairy farming practices.
Stand-Off Facility User Group
$300,000/$350,000
Monitoring Climate Change on Pasture Production - Phase 1
Goal: To predict changes in pasture growth by using NIWA's "Three Month Outlook Reports" The project will test the robustness of predictions from the CALM pasture production model with the aim of providing farmers with good data to base their production systems on and better manage climate risk.
National Climate Impact Group
Less than $50,000
Total funding for this category $1,111,046

Sustainable Farming Fund Community Based Projects 2nd Round

Title Organisation
Determining net Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions and environmental footprints of a deer 'Focus Farm'
Goal: The Focus Farm Community Group will establish the base environmental footprint and emissions profile for the farm using OVERSEER and other methods. A monitoring programme will be established and the results analysed to produce an emissions profile for deer farms. Outcomes will be profiled at FF field days and in industry publications.
Central Regions, NZDFA Deer Industry Focus Farm Community Group
Less than $50,000
New Zealand Biochar Network
Goal: Technology transfer - to develop a NZ biochar network that will enable knowledge about the potential for biochar in agricultural systems to be disseminated to farmers and foresters.
New Zealand Biochar Network
Less than $50,000
Improving water use efficiency to adapt arable farms to climate change
Goal: A simulation study on how climate change will impact arable farming businesses. The impact of three greenhouse gas emission scenarios will be investigated, together with the potential to implement adaptation strategies. Farmers will be able to evaluate how climate change will impact on their businesses, and how they can prepare and adapt to the changes.
Foundation for Arable Research (FAR)
$150,000/$175,000
Greenhouse gas mitigation opportunities on dairy farms using 'Overseer' and 'Udder' modelling tools
Goal: A demonstration study of the effects changes in farm systems could have on greenhouse gas emissions as well as production, profitability and N leaching. This study using 6-10 farms builds on previous work using computer models to investigate N leaching in the Rotorua catchment.
Fonterra and AgResearch in conjunction with farmers from the Lake Rotorua catchment
$125,000/$150,000
Towards resilient farmers in Northland
Goal: To help landowners to become more resilient to climate change related adverse weather events using the 2007 Northland floods as a case study. Building on existing information the study will identify farm management options which will increase the resilience of farm systems to future adverse weather events in Northland and nationally.
NZ Landcare Trust as convener of a project team supported by landowners, Northland Regional Council and research interests
$225,000/$250,000
National survey of indigenous plantations for carbon accounting
Goal: To undertake a survey of indigenous plantings, the first since 1980, in order to evaluate the role of these plantations in carbon sequestration. This will involve locating plantings, establishing Permanent Sample Plots, and making assessments for carbon accounting purposes.
Tane's Tree Trust
$150,000/$175,000
Adapting to climate change in hill country Hawke's Bay
Goal: To provide an understanding of relevant adaptations and approaches to adaptation in four different climate zones in Hawkes Bay.
Hawke's Bay Climate Change Adaptation Group
$150,000/$175,000
Hawke's Bay Winegrowers' Climate Change Project
Goal: To improve understanding in Hawkes Bay of the issues surrounding climate change and the possible impacts and opportunities for businesses.
Hawke's Bay Focus Vineyard Group
$100,000/$125,000
Adding to the Farm Forestry Model
Goal: To promote the benefits of farm forestry to a wider audience using case studies which focus on practicing farm foresters. For example: why and how they planted trees; and the role farm forestry plays for them as part of an integrated land management strategy.
The New Zealand Farm Forestry Association
Less than $50,000
Scoping the implications of climate change for the summerfruit industry
Goal: To identify climate change impacts and opportunities for the summerfruit industry and to scope: issues that need to be addressed through adaptation and mitigation; actions, timelines, targets and budgets; a communication plan; and a strategy to monitor industry uptake.
Summerfruit NZ
Less than $50,000
Adaptation of lowland/ coastal dairy farming in the Bay of Plenty
Goal: To engage lowland coastal farmers in Kaitiuna/ Maketu, Rangitaiki Plains and Opotiki to be better informed about the threats of climate change and, through a series of facilitated workshops, identify opportunities and adaptation actions.
Gavin Kenny
Less than $50,000
Carbon farming - opportunities & issues for rural NZ Information transfer for landowners and managers
Goal: To collate current rural climate change information and initiatives and present them in a series of workshops to raise levels of basic understanding amongst rural land owners and managers about the opportunities and issues presented by carbon sequestration and emissions trading.
Farmers, Farm Foresters & Forest Managers. The NZ Landcare Trust and NZ Farm Forestry Association
$125,000/$150,000
Field measurement of existing Chinese tallow trees and their potential for bio-diesel production in NZ
Goal: To undertake a feasibility study into the growth, seed yield, and general behaviour of the Chinese Tallow tree.
Te Tumu Kaituna 7B2 Trust
Less than $50,000
Vermicomposting of lake weeds and pulp and paper solids for carbon resource recovery for primary sectors
Goal: To assess the carbon balance in a trial use of vermicomposting to recover carbon from organic industrial and primary sector waste, with the vermicast being applied to pasture to increase the carbon content of the soil.
Te Arawa Lakes Trusts / Scion; Partnership
Less than $50,000
Taranaki farm system environmental evaluation
Goal: Using OVERSEER to evaluate greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency and nutrient loss from different dairy farm systems show-cased on the Stratford Demonstration Farm.
Stratford Demonstration Farm Society
$150,000/$175,000
New priorities for meat producers adapting to impacts of climate change and changing land use
Goal: To run focus groups throughout NZ to discuss, and define the challenges and opportunities of climate change for meat producers, and then to disseminate this knowledge to assist this group with adaptation.
Pastoral Meat Farming Community Group
$50,000/$75,000
Enhancing pastoral farming sustainability through carbon sequestration
Goal: To add resilience to Wairarapa farms by exploring opportunities for 'carbon farming' through the emissions trading scheme and the planting of trees.
Montfort Trimble Foundation
$225,000/$250,000
Understanding climate change and GHG emissions on dairy, sheep & beef farms
Goal: Development and testing of learning materials, methods and tools that specifically focus on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions for dairy, sheep and beef farmers.
Sheep & Beef Farmers' Climate Change Group, Dairy Farmers' Climate Change Group
$700,000/$800,000
Protein extraction from pasture
Goal: To carry out a feasibility study on the economic and technical potential of extracting protein from pasture.
The Protein Extractors
Less than $50,000
Managing increasing facial eczema challenges in dairying
Goal: The occurrence of facial eczema is likely to increase as temperature / humidity rises under climate change. The variability in dose rates using the current treatment adding zinc to drinking troughs will be investigated by measuring zinc levels in herds and working on solutions to the problem of uneven uptake.
Ruakura FE Group
$150,000/$175,000
Lamb Alive - a long term approach to an annual risk
Goal: To develop tools to estimate the impacts of severe weather events on lamb losses, and help industry planners better understand the likely future impacts of climate change.
Risk - Averse Sheep Farmers of Canterbury, Southland and Otago
$50,000/$75,000
Onion's carbon footprint and industry strategy
Goal: To develop a carbon footprint for the NZ onion industry and model the effect of different scenarios on emissions, including the verification and updating of assumption made for onions in the Lincoln food miles report.
Onions New Zealand Inc. - An Integrated Industry
$75,000/$100,000
Total funding for this category $2,764,073.50

Budget Summary

Category Amount
Forestry Sector Research $957,905
Cross Sectoral/ Integration Research $655,975
Adaptation Mechanisms to Cope with Climate Change $527,013
Mitigation of Agricultural Emissions $1,831,610
Sustainable Farming Fund Community Based Projects $1,111 046
Total Funding 2007/08 [5 categories above] $5,083,549
Plus: Sustainable Farming Fund Community Based Projects - 2nd Round $2,764,073

 

Last Updated: 13 January 2011

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