Along with commercial schemes designed to generate carbon credits, farmers can also participate in emissions reducing schemes via public bodies.
In Victoria, the state government-auspiced Victorian Carbon Farming Program has set up a pilot project to allow broadacre farmers the chance to establish plantations across their properties.
Victoria Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA) senior policy analyst - plantations strategy Liam Costello said the project represented an opportunity to tackle their emissions while improving their properties.
"The Victorian Carbon Farming Program is giving private landowners a great opportunity to reduce their emissions and build resilience to a changing climate by planting more trees on their properties," he said.
The project is being rolled out across the North Central Catchment Management Authority, a diverse region encompassing 13 per cent of Victoria's land mass across the Campaspe, Loddon, Avoca and Avon-Richardson basins.
It's an area that ranges from hilly high rainfall zones in the Central Highlands through to semi-arid plains in the north near the Murray River.
Mr Costello said the project would see landowners required to partner with registered project advisors, including organisations such as Greening Australia, Regen Farmers Mutual, TreeProject or Wood4Good who assist the landowner to establish and manage the trees over a 10-year period ensuring the benefits and value provided by the trees are maximised.
A key advantage of the project, compared to other schemes, is its flexibility and relatively short time frame, allowing farmers the chance to decide whether they look to try and monetise their carbon assets or whether the scheme is not for them.
The VCFP does not generate carbon credits nor is it aligned to any carbon market, however it does not preclude the generation of credits where project proponents seek to create them.
In terms of tangible outcomes, the plantings are designed to be able to be harvested for wood and timber.
The maximum size for VCFP projects will be 100 hectares given the requirements around environmental plantings, project at this scale are likely to be plantations, with farmers also able to plant shelterbelts, riparian buffers or other integrated planting types.
Logistically the program will utilise CSIRO technology via the national science agency's online carbon abatement calculator - LOOC-C (landscape options and opportunities for carbon abatement).
The LOOC-C carbon calculator has been designed to allow landowners to gain an understanding of the potential amount of carbon that could be sequestered on their land.
Mr Costello said this was important as the carbon sequestration capacity of land varies greatly across the landscape, primarily driven by rainfall and soil type.
Higher productive land will sequester more carbon quicker than areas of lower productivity.
From the government's perspective, the purpose of the VCFP is to remove carbon from the atmosphere and contribute to the state's transition to net zero carbon emissions by 2045.
The program's benefit to Victoria is hoped to come via its contribution to emissions reduction against the state and national greenhouse gas inventory which is separate to the carbon market.
Victorian government officials said they expected the scheme was most likely to be of interest to those in the livestock sector.
They said most emissions abatement opportunities in cropping relate to improving energy and input efficiency and seeking low emissions options.
The government's major initiative in this space is be the On-Farm Emissions Action Plan Pilot, which is designed to provide practical information, tools and services to support farmers to understand and reduce emissions.
This article is part of ACM Agri's Carbon Series. The series was produced in collaboration with the Australian Science Media Centre with support from the META Public Interest Journalism Fund administered by the Walkley Foundation.