THE words ‘bus tour’ don’t usually seem to inspire much of a reaction from me but shove the word ‘carbon’ in the sentence and curiosity starts to build.
Before I know it I’ve been very willingly wrangled into joining the Future Farmers Network northern ‘carbon bus’ tour – travelling the back roads west of Townsville on a mission – a mission that could potentially save the world. Okay, maybe that's taking it too far - the point is, I have been given a pretty amazing opportunity to tag along with a bunch of incredibly bright and passionate young Australian producers and educators to figure out how we can begin to curb carbon emissions.
It’s no secret that producing just one kilo of beef takes a lot of resources and the unfortunate side effect is methane. Yep. Farts. I said it, everyone was thinking it.
If we want to increase production in the next 30 years, we’re going to have to find a more efficient way to do it – a better way.
I hate to say it but my generation cop a lot of flak for being a little self-indulgent (yes, I’m writing a blog, I’m well aware of the hypocrisy) and lazy but I think when it comes down to it, we all want greater awareness of where our food comes from and how it is produced and this lot have taken the first step towards that education and understanding.
They’re proactive and my greatest hope is that they’ll go home from this tour and immediately start implementing sustainable farming techniques - spreading the word to other young producers
As part of the tour, I have also been given the opportunity to document the Young Carbon Farmers ‘maiden voyage’ in a series of blogs. But where to begin when we haven’t actually begun?
Sitting in the foyer, tapping away, I start to think about all the fun (dear boss, when I say ‘fun’ I mean ‘educational experiences’) things the group are going to get to do today.
First up we’ll be heading to Lansdown Research Station where Snow Barlow, professor at the University of Melbourne, will give us a run-down on carbon farming. This guy is all kinds of smart and I’m just waiting for the perfect opportunity to chat with him and figure out how we can save the planet, together.
Oh geez, he just sat down next to me, he’s super excited too! He reckons we need to decrease methane emissions not only because it will be great for the environment but methane in itself is actually energy for the animal and if we can reduce the output, we can increase the energy. Mind. Blown.
I might leave it there, wouldn’t want to give it all away before the day has even started… and don’t worry mum, they’re taking great care of me!