Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund

$22M is available over 5 years to support Indigenous Australians to participate in the Carbon Farming.

Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund


The ongoing Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund will support Indigenous Australians to participate in the Carbon Farming Initiative. The fund will commence from July 2012, and will be delivered in two streams:

  • A Research and Development stream ($5.2 million over five years) will provide funding (including grants of $4.4 million) for research and reporting tools for Carbon Farming Initiative methodologies. This funding will be directed towards low-cost methodologies likely to have high Indigenous participation to help create real and lasting opportunities for Indigenous Australians.
  • A Capacity Building and Business Support stream ($17.1 million over five years) will help Indigenous communities establish or participate in carbon farming projects.



The objective of the Project is to encourage Indigenous participation in the Indigenous Carbon Farming Initiative.



Some of the recipients are listed below.




North Australia Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance LtdThe project for Northern Indigenous Environmental Services (NIES) will support  accelerated participation of Indigenous groups in the CFI by developing –

• a strategy for marketing Indigenous-produced credits;

• a  strategy to attract “bridging” finance from major corporates and expand the number of communities able to participate;

• an agreement to achieve consent from traditional landowners; and

• processes and templates for contractual agreements on benefit distribution.


Warddeken Land Management LimitedThe project, Moving the West Arnhem Land Fire Abatement (WALFA) Project to CFI, will

• transfer the existing  WALFA project into a CFI approved project for abatement;

• expand this Savanna Burning collaboration over an enlarged area with new partners; and

• ensure that the new entity meets legal and compliance requirements, has an effective business structure and supports the aspirations of the relevant Indigenous landowners and land managers.


Kimberley Land CouncilThe Indigenous North Kimberley Fire Abatement (INKFA) Business Development project will –

• develop viable carbon farming businesses on 4 million hectares of Exclusive Possession Native Title Land in the North Kimberley for registration under the approved Savannah Burning methodology;

• engage carbon farming and business development specialists to gain access to knowledge and information that Traditional Owners will need to make informed decisions about participating in the CFI, and

• give assistance in registering project/s.


Yaraguia Enterprises IncorporatedThe Marlak Niran Project proposal seeks to establish a project model that will enable Indigenous land owners to develop, establish and manage CFI projects.  The project has completed a feasibility study, one of 4 case studies commissioned by SEWPaC.

The project will –

• implement a feasible and cost effective biodiversity and carbon sequestration model for Indigenous land owners, based on the approved Environmental Plantings methodology;

• develop the skills and knowledge for similar future projects;

• transfer knowledge, skills, on-ground experience and technical advice to land holders with regard to improved land management practices;

• provide various ‘off farm’ benefits linked to in the wheatbelt region;

• establish strong links with other longer term projects like the National Wildlife Corridors Project; and

• develop practical experiences around linking Indigenous cultural heritage values to conservation and environmental values.


Tiwi Land Council IncThe project will implement findings of Phase I of the Tiwi Carbon Study (Tiwi Land Council/ CSIRO research project).

The project will –

• Provide access to knowledge and information necessary to participate in the CFI; organise workshops to observe and participate in early dry season programs; undertake planning for implementation, review and monitoring; and provide training in the use of North Australian Fire Information (NAFI) data.

• Provide funding for carbon farming specialists, trainers and other business development resources to help build Tiwi capacity. This will include engagement of a project manager; training and workshops for Tiwi Land Rangers, members of the Tiwi Islands Volunteer Bushfire Brigade and Tiwi plantation forestry workers; engagement of specialists in fire planning, management and operations to ensure the project meets CFI methodology and regulatory requirements; and validation specialists in vegetation assessment.

• Expert advice to help develop governance and contractual arrangements for carbon farming projects, such as financial and legal advice relating to business administration, ACCU trading, tax and ACCU sales contracts.


Aboriginal Carbon FundThe Aboriginal Carbon Fund project will employ a Project Manager and Project Development Officer to undertake the following activities –

• work with traditional land owners to develop carbon projects with financial sustainability and co-ordinate a Traditional Owner and Corporate Australia Investment Forum;

• development of a Fair Carbon trading system and an Aboriginal Carbon Standard tool;

• provide support and documentation of business processes and systems to meet CFI compliance requirements for Registered Offset Entities (ROE); and

• coordinate accounting, legal and other carbon business experts as required.

• work with traditional land owners to develop carbon projects building in co-benefits, and conduct climate change and carbon workshops on country with Aboriginal groups;

• undertake feasibility studies and reports;

• co-ordinate the development  of the carbon methodologies; and

• liaise with government agencies, research bodies, universities and other relevant organisations


Muru Mittigar LtdThe Muru Mittigar Carbon Farming Project seeks to develop carbon farming skills within Muru, allow Muru to develop resources and training programs that will assist other Aboriginal groups to effectively engage in carbon farming, and develop the internal skills to factor carbon initiatives into future land acquisitions. The project’s feasibility study was completed in 2008.

The proposal seeks to –

• employ a project manager to develop an implementation plan based on the feasibility study, the mine revegetation plan and identified outcomes, and project manage the project to completion;

• seek legal advice to finalise agreements with the land owners and the State Government to secure the carbon rights for the project; and

• develop resources that can be used to provide skills development in carbon farming in other Aboriginal organisations supported by Muru Mittigar’s cultural, social and economic development program.


Savanna Alliance (Aust) CorpThe project will establish the Savanna Alliance (Australia) Corporation Limited as an ‘investment ready’, not for profit registered Carbon Offsets entity that will facilitate engagement into the carbon farming market for Aboriginal business entities and land managers.

The project will –

• prepare a Carbon Farming market investment  ‘Information Memorandum’ for savanna burning for Indigenous businesses;

• engage Indigenous groups and businesses interested in carbon farming;

• develop operation management frameworks and materials that satisfy  statutory requirements, to be used by participants; and

• complete the legal and financial instruments to support the Savanna Alliance operational framework and establishment of structure.


Balkanu Cape York Development CorporationThis project will develop the required governance and business structures and the commercial contractual arrangements required to enter the commercial carbon market. The region south of Aurukun has been identified as the most suitable Cape York entry point for a savannah burning carbon opportunity.

This project for Aurukun will:

• Establish the governance systems and business models required to enable market entry;

• Generate final project boundary maps for this pilot enterprise;

• Complete collation and analysis of fire history data necessary for the CFI methodology;

• Enable the generation of revenues in 2013 with the abatement of an estimated 30,000 tons CO2-e per year;

• Create a replicable model for progressive expansion to a greater area of Aurukun and other Western Cape York project areas; and

• Maintain momentum and engagement with Traditional Owner groups and build capacity for inclusion of other areas in 2014.



A full list of recipients is provided here:

  • Category 1 – Feasibility and Assessment activities up to $50,000 |  (Word – 131KB)
  • Category 2 – Business and Project Development activities up to $300,000 |  (Word – 84KB)


Eligible Projects

The proposed Projects should:

  • Relate to an activity that is likely to have high Indigenous participation;
  • Relate to a methodology that is or has the potential to be approved under the Indigenous Carbon Farming Initiative; and
  • Feature a team with the demonstrated capability (including technical) to carry out the project.



In the initial round of the Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund, $1.3m is available through two streams:

Category 1 – Feasibility and Assessment grants up to $50,000
Grants up to $50,000 are available to assist Indigenous organisations and individuals undertake feasibility assessments and develop carbon farming project ideas. Funding is available to:

  • investigate opportunities under the Carbon Farming Initiative through training and support activities
  • assess the feasibility of a carbon farming project idea
  • seek specialist advice
  • explore partnership opportunities for carbon farming businesses

Category 2 – Business and Project Development grants up to $300,000
Grants up to $300,000 are available to Indigenous organisations and individuals with an existing feasibility assessment or business plan to implement carbon farming businesses. Funding is available to:

  • employ a carbon farming project manager
  • progress carbon farming business development
  • seek specialist legal, contractual, governance or business development advice
  • implement carbon farming projects and to assist in the establishment of carbon farming enterprises and related activities.



Applications closed 30 May 2013.


Expert Assistance

Writing a good quality grant application is a critical element in the application process. An application needs to be well thought through, written concisely, have clear objectives and purpose, and show clear links to the objectives of the grant guidelines.

The grant application must answer all questions, provide all required information and respond to the merit criteria. It should also reflect your organisation’s business strategy.

Writing a good application takes time and effort, and requires particular writing skills.

Bulletpoint are expert grant consultants and can assist with all aspects of grant preparation.

Call us on (03) 9005 6789 or email to discuss further.

We have significant experience in applying for grants. Typical areas where we can be of assistance include:

      • Demonstrating the identified need;
      • Highlighting the relevance to current government policies and priorities;
      • Complete the Project Plan and Budget Projections;
      • Identify Outcomes that are measurable;
      • Detail the applicant organisation’s experience or expertise in undertaking the project/s;
      • Calculating the value for money; and
      • Demonstrating capacity to deliver quality outcomes


 Additional Information

Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund – Home



Who can apply for an Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund Grant?

The Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund welcomes applications from Indigenous organisations and individuals interested in exploring opportunities under the Carbon Farming Initiative or in progressing carbon farming or related businesses.

Where the applicant is an individual, the applicant will need to be able to supply a statutory declaration confirming their Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander heritage. Where the applicant is an organisation, the applicant needs to be an Indigenous organisation.

A legally incorporated entity in Australia can act as a contract manager on behalf of an Indigenous organisation applicant provided they can supply a letter of consent from the Indigenous organisation applicant.

Applicants should consult the eligibility section in the grant application guidelines for specific activities that are eligible for funding.

Is the Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund linked to the Carbon Farming Initiative?

The Carbon Farming Initiative is one of the programs under the Australian Government’s Clean Energy Future. It allows land managers to earn carbon credits by storing carbon or reducing greenhouse gas emissions on the land.

There are two broad categories of Carbon Farming Initiative activities:

  • Emissions avoidance activities which generate offsets by reducing or avoiding emissions; and
  • Sequestration activities which generate abatement by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through sequestering carbon in plants as they grow or by increasing organic matter in soil.

Indigenous co-benefits, (including cultural, social or economic benefit) can provide proponents with an additional opportunity to sell carbon credits at a premium price.

How much money is available through Round One of the Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund?

Funding of $1.3m is available in Round one of the Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund through a competitive grants program. There are two categories of funding available – Category 1 grants for feasibility assessment activities, up to $50,000 (GST exclusive); and Category 2 grants for business and project development activities up to $300,000 (GST exclusive). Funds will be capped at the funding limit specified but expenditure of these grants over multiple financial years may be approved on a case by case basis.

What opportunities are there for Indigenous Australians to access other programs under the Land Sector package to implement their project?

The Biodiversity Fund is a great opportunity for Indigenous applicants to achieve biodiversity outcomes on country as well as maximise new carbon market opportunities. Subsequent funding rounds may allow Indigenous organisations to apply for funds to implement ‘on ground’ works associated with establishing a carbon farming business.

Which Indigenous groups can apply for funding?

Applications are welcomed from all Indigenous groups and individuals, providing they meet the eligibility criteria as set out in the Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund Grant Application Guidelines.

Are State agencies eligible applicants for the Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund?

No. The applicant must be an Indigenous organisation or individual. Successful applicants may choose to work in partnership with state agencies or other partners.

Can I submit extra information in support of my application?

Yes. Please note that while the assessment panel may consider additional information provided, it is not obligated to do so.

Additional information listed below can also be submitted with your applicationL

  • a statutory declaration confirming your Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander heritage for applicants who are ‘individuals’
  • a ‘Statement by Supplier’ form if the applicant does not have an ABN
  • a signed letter of consent from the Traditional Owners and other relevant Indigenous people associated with the place or country upon which the project will be undertaken
  • a feasibility assessment and / or business plan and location map
  • a letter of support from the land holder of the site where the carbon farming business is proposed to take place if the applicant is not the land owner

Can I submit more than one application?

Applicants may submit proposals for more than one project. Each proposal is considered individually and should be capable of being implemented regardless of whether other applications are successful.

When does my project need to be completed by?

Projects will generally be funded for a single year. All grants will be capped at the funding limit specified in the Guidelines; however the expenditure of grants over multiple financial years may be approved on a case by case basis.

Can an Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund grant be used to purchase equipment and other capital items?

The applicant will need to demonstrate, in the context of their project, how the purchase of equipment or other capital items represents value for public money and contributes to their ability to deliver against the Indigenous Carbon Farming Fund objectives, as outlined in the grant application guidelines.

Is there a cap for funding?

Yes. Category 1 grants for Feasibility and Assessment activities are capped at $50,000 (GST exclusive) and Category 2 grants for Business and Project Development activities are capped at $300,000 (GST exclusive).

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