West Australia’s vast swathes of timber plantations could help Australia reach its emissions goal much quicker than forecast. Under a new method introduced this year by the Clean Energy Regulator, existing plantations can receive Australian Carbon Credit Units for a continued plantation forest under the Emissions Reduction Fund – with the forestry industry able to sequester and store carbon into existing plantations for profit. It is estimated there are about 362,000 hectares of plantations in WA, according to the Department of Agriculture. The plantations had previously only been allowed to participate in the Emissions Reduction Fund if new forests were established, or if existing short-rotation forests switched to long rotations. …Ross Kingwell from the School of Agriculture and Environment at the University of WA said the forestry carbon schemes would impact national emission reduction targets … but it was unlikely there would be a huge uptake in moving agricultural land to forestry.