Offsetting the carbon produced by fuel use
A Western Australian fishing company has been commended for becoming the world’s first seafood company to be certified as carbon neutral, by offsetting its emissions with the planting of native Australian trees.
Agriculture and Food Minister Ken Baston said Austral Fisheries, based in West Leederville, would invest in a Wheatbelt project to restore bushland and focus on efforts to make its fuel use more efficient.
The Yarra Biodiversity Corridor, 400 kilometres north of Perth, is part of 10,000 hectares of degraded agricultural land that has been revegetated under a carbon offset program.
Austral Fisheries is a commercial fishing company which catches and processes Patagonian toothfish, Mackerel icefish and ocean caught Banana and Tiger prawns for the world markets.
In doing so, it produces about 27,422 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions a year.
This is produced through the use of fuel on its boats right through to emissions from the production and transport of supplies provided to vessels, and all supporting activities such as shore-based operations and management, administration, policy development, sales and marketing. It includes emissions generated by other suppliers such as sea, land and air transport, and cool rooms.
The company estimates that it needs to plant 140ha of native Australian bush each year to offset these emissions.
“Austral Fisheries has accounted for all carbon emissions it can identify from the start of its activities, through to the point where it sells the fish. It has taken this decision in an effort to ensure a healthy, sustainable environment for the seafood that it relies on for its livelihood,” Mr Baston said.
Austral Fisheries’ boats use the equivalent amount of diesel a year as 4,000 cars