Prime Minister John Key today launched the New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre, which will be headquartered in Palmerston North at AgResearch.
The Centre is a partnership between AgResearch, DairyNZ, Landcare Research, Lincoln University, Massey University, NIWA, Plant & Food Research, the Pastoral Greenhouse Gas Research Consortium (PGgRc) and Scion.
What research will be brought together under the Centre’s banner?
Details are not expected until later this month, but media releases thus far imply that under the new system, existing research projects are likely to be coordinated and supported, rather than superseded.
With this in mind, the SMC has pulled together a resource sheet on current New Zealand agricultural greenhouse gas research at a various institutions throughout the country:
Livestock Emissions and Abatement Research Network (LEARN) – an international research network led by NZ; includes a global directory of research associates
Pastoral Greenhouse Gas Research Consortium (PGgRc) – a public/private research consortium founded in 2003 to coordinate research into agricultural GHG
In the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology’s 2008/09 contestable funding round, 37 research projects received funding under the Sustainable Land Management and Climate Change theme (Round 1 projects, Round 2 projects [PDF files]). Many are related to mitigation of agricultural greenhouse gases. These include:
- GHG Mitigation Using Efficient Cows – DairyNZ; Science leader: Dr Garry Waghorn
- Reducing agricultural methane emissions – Landcare Research; Science leader: Dr Adrian Walcroft
- Accelerated ruminant methane mitigation – PGgRc; Science leader: Dr Peter Jannsen
- Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by the agricultural sector – NIWA; Science leader: Dr Mike Harvey
- Biochar in grazed pasture systems – Lincoln University; Science leader: Dr Tim Clough
- Sheep, cattle, and methane predictors – AgResearch; Science leader: Dr Russell Snell
- Planet to paddocks land-use trends – Landcare Research; Science leader: Dr Daniel Rutledge
- Farm management and GHG for pastoral sector – AgResearch; Science leader: Dr Robyn Dynes
- Identifying non agricultural and agricultural plant species with anti-methanogenic properties – AgResearch; Science leader: Dr Gerald Cosgrove
Other areas of ongoing research include:
Vaccine for livestock to create immune response against methane-producing bacteria PGgRc/AgResearch Key scientist: Dr Bryce Buddle
Sequencing the genome of methane-producing bacteria in the rumen PGgRc / AgResearch Key scientist: Dr Graeme Atwood
Selective breeding of livestock to produce low methane emitting animals; animal variation (PDF) PGgRc / AgResearch Key scientists: Dr Harry Clark, Dr Ben Vlaming
Optimum diet and/or feed supplements for reduced emissions -AgResearch Key scientist: Dr Cesar Pinares-Patiño; -DairyNZ Key scientist: Dr Garry Waghorn
Soil carbon inventory, nitrous/methane mitigation Landcare Research Key scientist: Dr David Whitehead
Reducing nitrous oxide emissions from ruminant livestock AgResearch Key scientist: Dr Cecile de Klein
Nitrogen-inhibiting spray (Eco-N) Lincoln University Key scientists: Dr Keith Cameron, Dr Hong Di
Sequestration of carbon in agricultural soils using biochar (charcoal) Massey University Key scientist: Dr Attilio Pignieri
Landcare Research Key scientist: Dr Adrian Walcroft; PGG Wrightson Consulting Key contact: Tony Rhodes
NB: The above list is intended primarily as an overview, and should not be considered exhaustive.