Michael, 37, and his wife Tanya have four young children and run cattle on their 16,000 hectare property south of Bourke, New South Wales, which he took over from his parents in 2012.
Michael first heard about carbon farming from his local financial counsellor but was confused at first about whether he could run livestock on land used for a carbon farming project. He was relieved to find out that he could still continue his livestock business, while taking the pressure off livestock as his sole source of income.
“Carbon farming has been a good asset,” he says. When the livestock industry’s not doing too well due to low prices or drought, we still have a regular income from carbon farming.”
“It works really well with our livestock business and makes for a really viable long-term solution”
Michael reports that his community has been supportive. “Carbon farming has brought income into our community. Even when it’s dry, the carbon farms are still ticking over and generating income for the local business owners,” he says.
Michael is re-investing the carbon farming money into other agriculture projects to help make his business more drought tolerant. He believes that carbon farming will continue to be a huge benefit for farmers and graziers in the future.
“While the livestock market can fluctuate, carbon farming helps you budget and set out plans for the future with a secure source of income,” he says.
“It means we can plan for the future compared to just trying to get through one week at a time,” he says. “It adds another tool to our kit and allows us to keep using the land.”
“I would hate to think what sort of position we’d be in if we didn’t have the regular income stream from the carbon farming.” 
Regeneration carbon farming projects involve managing land in a way that enables native vegetation to regenerate naturally into forest. This is done by changing, reducing or removing factors that would otherwise suppress regeneration (e.g. grazing pressure, feral animals and non-native plants and clearing or thinning practices).
The regenerating forest captures and stores carbon in the landscape, producing carbon credits which can be traded. Over time, the project implementation area will transition to ‘forest cover’. In Australia, forest cover means an area of land that has trees two or more metres tall and a canopy that covers at least 20% of the total area. Forest cover should be achieved within 15 years of when the trees germinated.
A regeneration project is implemented on land in Australia for either 25 or 100 years. Projects can only take place on land areas that did not have forest cover for the ten years before the project commences (known as the baseline period). The regeneration project involves natural germination of trees, rather than seeding or planting activities, which are covered under different project methods.
Case Study Examples
Managing a cattle in a way that reduces the emissions intensity of the herd.
Increasing the amount of organic matter in the soil as a direct result of changes in property management.
Expanding or optimising plantation estates for solid wood production.
Planting or seeding trees to establish a forest.