Plantation forest operator Carbon Conscious welcomes progress through Parliament of Australia's Carbon Farming Initiative, says it will bring certainty for investors in carbon bio-sequestration projects

Lorena Madrigal

Lorena Madrigal

Aug 23, 2011 – Carbon Conscious Ltd

SYDNEY, Australia , August 23, 2011 (press release) – Dear Sir

CARBON CONSCIOUS WELCOMES CARBON FARMING INITIATIVE
Carbon Conscious Limited (ASX Code: CCF) (“Carbon Conscious” or “the Company”), Australasia’s leading developer of forestry plantation projects to deliver carbon offset credits, welcomes the passage of the Commonwealth Government’s Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI) legislation through the upper house of Federal Parliament.

Mr. Steve Lowe, Executive Chairman of Carbon Conscious, said the passage of the CFI legislation provides additional certainty for investors in carbon bio-sequestration projects, and creates a mechanism for Australia to become a leading player in the global carbon economy.

“The CFI provides certainty for the carbon bio-sequestration industry and confidence for major carbon emitters and investors, who are looking for proven, reliable ways to offset their carbon emissions. Growing trees to create carbon credits not only helps reduce carbon emissions, it converts poor quality land into productive land and generates long-term environmental, social and economic benefits for local communities.”

As noted in the Company’s announcement on the 12th July 2011, the introduction of a carbon price and the passage of the CFI make it more likely that up to $190 million worth of commercial options to plant trees on behalf of existing clients, will now be exercised.

“We have existing contracts with Origin and BP worth $45 million - Carbon Conscious and Origin Energy have already signed the single largest bio-sequestration deal in Australia’s history (fully executed). In addition, our expectation is that new international opportunities will present now that the CFI legislative framework is in place. With the passage of the legislation, we can now prepare for next year’s winter planting season with renewed confidence as well as continue to expand the business to capitalise on potential significant additional demand from clients.”

Carbon Conscious operates plantation forests in Australia’s wheatbelt region and in New Zealand, utilising low productivity or degraded farm land in low rainfall areas to plant native tree species.

“The CFI and passage of an Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) (expected by October / November 2011) will enable Australian businesses to buy and sell carbon credits on an open market. For Carbon Conscious, the establishment of an ETS in Australia will allow us to better integrate our Australian and New Zealand plantation businesses, and deliver structured projects that are optimized for our customers.”

Yours faithfullySteve Lowe Executive Chairman Carbon Conscious

Carbon Conscious Ltd – Background
Carbon Conscious creates large scale carbon estates to produce carbon offset credits under the Commonwealth Government’s Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI), by planting Mallee Eucalypt trees; a native species perfectly adapted to the low rainfall and low quality soil conditions of the Australian wheatbelt.

Carbon offset credits represent the abatement of greenhouse gases (primarily carbon dioxide CO²) by removing carbon from the atmosphere by growing a plantation of trees that sequesters carbon in the soil and in the trees themselves. Mallee Eucalypt trees continue to sequester carbon throughout their life span, however the greatest carbon uptake occurs in the rapid growth phase during the first 20 years of the plants’ life.
Carbon Conscious Limited was listed on the ASX in May 2008, and currently has over 8,000 hectares of Mallee eucalypt trees under management in Western Australia and operates extensive plantations in New Zealand.

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