ICIN welcomes the launch of the Queensland Government Land Restoration Fund Round 2 and the Queensland Natural Capital Fund.
This provides a significant opportunity for Indigenous groups in Queensland to develop their land and sea management programs through corporate and government markets for carbon and ‘natural capital’.
What is Natural Capital?
Natural Capital can include anything which supports healthy country, such as clean air and water, cultural sites, or protecting habitat for animals and plants from threats such as clearing, weeds or feral animals.
‘Natural capital’ is an economic term referring to those systems essential to life, which do not have a specific dollar value. Because the impacts upon ‘natural capital’ have not been included as costs in our mainstream economy, this has allowed big businesses to profit from polluting air, water and eroding critical resources such as forests, woodlands and fisheries at an unsustainable rate. Climate change has forced governments and corporates to take into account these costs, which has given rise to a market for ‘natural capital’.
ICIN Coordinator, Anna Boustead, said that the Queensland Government's announcement shows recognition of the value Indigenous led land and sea management projects, and helps to support new opportunities for Indigenous groups to undertake land and sea management projects.
“We are seeing increasing recognition from the corporate sector of the immense value of Indigenous land and sea management, and this is reflected in the government’s announcement today.
ICIN is working to deliver communication resources to help Indigenous groups to understand these emerging economic opportunities.
The fast pace of these markets means there is a strong need for Indigenous groups to properly understand the benefits, as well as the risks of engaging corporate and government markets for carbon.
It is particularly pertinent that these projects are supported to be Indigenous-led, given the opportunity for these markets to support Indigenous land and sea management practices, and remembering that it was Indigenous organisations which catalysed the carbon industry in Australia back in 2006, through a partnership of Traditional Owners in West Arnhem Land together with corporates, scientists and governments to seek recognition of the value of Indigenous savanna fire management practices.”