The New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre (NZAGRC) has welcomed the findings of an independent review, which concluded the centre is a scientific success.
The NZAGRC is a partnership launched in 2010 between leading New Zealand agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG) research providers and the Pastoral Greenhouse Gas Research Consortium (PGgRC). It is also actively supporting other bodies such as the Global Research Alliance (GRA) on agricultural GHGs.
The aim of the independent review was to determine if the NZAGRC has delivered as intended and assess its progress to date.
“The review found New Zealand is a world leader in all fields of agricultural greenhouse gas research and strongly endorsed the research programme’s performance to date,” says NZAGRC director Dr Harry Clark.
“New Zealand is a small country, but we punch above our weight in climate change-related agricultural research. The reviewers noted the high quality research and international recognition enabled by the NZAGRC through showcasing its scientific activities and capability internationally.”
The NZAGRC is investing almost $49 million over 10 years into New Zealand agricultural GHG emissions research.
“The NZAGRC has a strong history of capability development, particularly in supporting young researchers into permanent positions,” says Dr Clark. “Effort has also gone into identifying capability or expertise gaps that could be critical for New Zealand in the future, such as soil science and modelling.”
The review has made recommendations including increasing the pace and breadth of the NZAGRC’s research, developing wider partnerships, seeking further relevant stakeholder input, and focusing on science extension and commercialisation.
“The NZAGRC has made fantastic progress,” says Neil Williams, manager sustainable resources at the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI). “The opportunity and challenge now is to ensure we continue to support New Zealand’s scientific excellence and leadership while putting our research into practice. We continue to strive towards offering New Zealand farmers practical, cost-effective solutions to reduce their on-farm greenhouse gas emissions.”