TAOISEACH Leo Varadkar has committed to not reducing the size of the national herd as part of ongoing efforts to reduce emissions.
Replying to Courtmacsherry farmer and Munster regional chair of the IFA, Harold Kingston, at the organisation’s AGM, he said: ‘But that does mean we must do everything else to reduce emissions and have to almost prove twice as hard that we’re going to do that, in order to convince people that it’s the right policy.’
Meanwhile, at an IFA climate event in Dublin recently, IFA president Joe Healy said the agri-food sector stands ready to respond and is actively engaged in climate action.
‘IFA supports the delivery of the Teagasc climate road map, particularly across the three areas of improved on-farm efficiencies, greater renewables use and recognition of the carbon that is sequestered by the sector,’ he said.
‘The future must be about safeguarding Ireland’s climate efficient model of food production, while providing innovative opportunities for farm families and rural Ireland to climate proof their futures. Farming’s entrepreneurial spirit is ready to respond,’ he said.
The chair of the government’s climate change advisory council, Prof John Fitzgerald, said the next Government faced stark choices if the country is to achieve its target.
However, Frank O’Mara, director of research with Teagasc, said agriculture can reach its targets if the key mitigation measures in the Teagasc roadmap are adopted.
He said this can be done while maintaining the national herd.