Environment and sustainability

MLA invests up to $5.7 million a year in environment and sustainability R&D. This investment aims to help producers improve the short and long-term environmental credentials of their business, while boosting productivity. It also assists producers in ensuring community expectations of responsible land stewardship and management are met.

Project areas include:

  • Managing soils for ground cover
  • Pest animals – new biocontrols, toxins and approaches
  • Weed control – biological, chemical and pasture management
  • Greenhouse gas mitigation
  • Adaptation to climate change
  • Managing climate variability
  • Online whole farm property planning
  • Improving vegetation biodiversity
  • Fire management in northern Australia
  • Building practical knowledge to boost on-farm production and profitability by reducing greenhouse gas emissions

Returns to producers

Investment in biological control of pest plants and animals has been assessed as providing significant returns to industry, with a benefit-cost ratio of more than 21:1 for weeds and more than 48:1 for rabbits.

MLA also manages the National Livestock Methane Program (NLMP) which is funded by the Australian Government. Researchers working on projects under the NLMP have found up to 40% or more of the feed energy lost in methane from livestock can be captured to boost animal productivity.

The NLMP builds on research findings from the Australian Government’s Reducing Emissions from Livestock Research Program (RELRP) which was also coordinated by MLA.