Research into the impact of global phosphorus scarcity on agriculture in Australia was presented at a two-day workshop held in Canberra under the auspices of the CSIRO Sustainable Agriculture Flagship. The ISF report and paper based on this research outlines possible future pathways for long-term phosphorus security. It reviews the current situation for global stocks and flows, the national phosphorous budget, global phosphorous scarcity and peak phosphorous. The authors identified and developed a framework of probable (business-as-usual) and preferred (sustainable) scenarios for Australia (including recycling and efficiency options from whole phosphorus cycle). The policy and costing implications of these scenarios are outlined as well as areas needing further research. Other papers presented at the workshop examined: the status of phosphorus use efficiency in Australian agriculture; phosphorus requirements of northern Australian grazing systems; the chemical and biological nature of P-accumulation in agricultural soils; and, improving the phosphorus-use efficiency of agriculture (agronomic, plant and microbial strategies).
Securing a sustainable phosphorus future for Australia: implications of global phosphorus scarcity and possible solutions, White et al (2010), Institute for Sustainable Futures, for CSIRO Sustainable Agriculture Flagship.