Canada’s CDPQ has created a new A$200m (€183m) sustainable agricultural platform in Australia with Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), to drive down emissions and improve sustainability across the agriculture sector.

CDPQ has invested A$150m in Wilga Farming, with CEFC co-investing A$50m to spearhead the investment push needed to help Australian farming decarbonise – while also boosting farm production.

Mid-market sustainable agriculture manager Gunn Agri Partners will manage the platform.

Together, CDPQ and Australia’s CEFC have also acquired a minority stake in Gunn Agri Partners’ asset, The Glen – a 1,200-hectare property near Delungra, in northern New South Wales – to facilitate active participation in decarbonisation efforts across Gunn’s portfolio, which is worth some A$750m.

CEFC head of natural capital, Heechung Sung, said: “By facilitating the flow of much-needed capital into the sector, our work with CDPQ supports the decarbonisation efforts of farmers while boosting production and enabling them to remain competitive globally.”

Emmanuel Jaclot, EVP and head of infrastructure at CDPQ, said: “Through this partnership as part of our sustainable land management strategy we are reaffirming our commitment to investing alongside organisations that are truly moving the needle on sustainability in the agricultural sector by contributing to its decarbonisation.

Gunn Agri Partners founding chair, Bill Gunn, spoke of Gunn’s DNA being completely “investor-aligned” to capture timely opportunities and to develop and operate assets with sustainability as a fundamental part of Gunn management.

Australia’s Federal minister for climate change and energy, Chris Bowen, said: “Agriculture is responsible for over 15% of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions, and by supporting initiatives like this we’re investing in solutions to drive up farm productivity and profits while driving down emissions at the same time.”

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