Government and the Climate Change Advisory Council must take account of biogenic methane in setting emission targets under climate budgets under the new Climate Action Bill, AgriLand understands.

The revised Climate Action Bill will go before Cabinet later this morning (Tuesday, March 23) for approval, with “agriculture protected”, according to government sources.

In a rewording of its original format, the bill is expected to “achieve” carbon neutrality “no later than 2050” in its new, revised form.

It is believed that, according to the new bill, the climate council will take into account “relevant scientific advice, including with regard to the distinct characteristics of biogenic methane” and “international best practice on the reporting of greenhouse gas emissions and removal”.

It is understood that work behind the scenes has been ongoing from the Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue to have biogenic methane treated separately in particular.

Biogenic methane is emitted from biological processes including livestock, waste treatment and wetlands.

Named the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Bill 2021, a primary objective of this new bill will be to implement carbon commitment with additional statutory policy documents including carbon budgets, climate action plans and long-term climate action strategies.

The development and publication of the bill is one of the key commitments of the Programme for Government.