APPLICATIONS are open for a pilot that rewards farmers who protect, manage or improve remnant native vegetation on their land.
The aim of the $22.3-million pilot is to create a credible and sustainable market mechanism that improves biodiversity and creates new income opportunities for farmers.
Agriculture Minister David Littleproud said what the program looked like on the ground would vary from farm to farm.
"It may be as simple as fencing off native vegetation and undertaking enhanced weed control, or it could be protecting pockets of remnant vegetation and linking them through revegetated corridors," Mr Littleproud said.
"This is a great opportunity for farmers to build their drought resilience by diversifying their on-farm income.
"We're putting a value on farm native vegetation. It's good for the environment, and farmers can make a buck out of it."
As part of the pilot, the Australian National University (ANU) has created the processes and protocols that measure and reward farmers for undertaking the projects, delivering a system that will be respected by international markets.
The pilot is open to six natural resource management regions, with the intent to roll the program out across the country in future.
The six regions are Burnett-Mary (Qld), Central West (NSW), North Central (Vic), North Tasmania (Tas), Eyre Peninsula (SA) and South-West (WA).
The regions were selected to test the program across a range of jurisdictions, farming systems and vegetation types.
The program will complement the government's existing Carbon+Biodiversity pilot, which financially rewards farmers for planting native trees on their property.
Applications for the remnant vegetation pilot close on October 27. Farmers can find out more at the Department of Water, Agriculture and Environment website.
The story Pilot to reward farmers for improving remnant native vegetation first appeared on Farm Online.