Carbon Abatement and Storage – Kangaroo Grazing Systems

Australian Wildlife Services

  • Project code: PRO-015092

  • Project stage: Current

  • Project start date: Monday, June 14, 2021

  • Project completion date: Friday, December 9, 2022

  • National Priority: NCO - National Challenges and Opportunities - SM


The contribution livestock production makes to Australia’s greenhouse gas liability, has been, and is still profound. Pasture and feedlot cattle and sheep account for 9.65% of Australia’s total emissions through enteric release, manure and urine.  Cattle generate approximately eight times more greenhouse gases per kilogram of meat produced compared to kangaroo. Additionally, land clearing, primary production and erosion on grazing lands have depleted carbon in soil and vegetation. While there is large scope to reduce emissions in the livestock sector, there are minimal proven opportunities, especially for range fed cattle.  We propose a grazing system for rangeland livestock producers that would reduce the stocking rate of livestock and allocate part of the available pasture to produce kangaroo meat. While income would be lost from a reduction in livestock, income diversification would arise from harvesting kangaroos, and carbon credits. In addition, reducing total grazing pressure stocking rates of livestock has the co-benefits of improving sustainability and biodiversity and addresses human and animal welfare issues while preventing economic losses from managing a pest animal. Such a change should be relatively easy because the kangaroos are already there and many producers currently seek to reduce their impacts through pest culling.  Australia has some 14 million kangaroos on pastoral properties and pastoralists currently get no return from them. We suggest that  with further information and instructional guidelines producers will be able to assess their opportunity to integrate kangaroos into their traditional practices and in turn, access the carbon market.


National Rural Issues

Research Organisation

Australian Wildlife Services