Will Irish Farming be sacrificed at the altar of Climate Change?

flavirostris

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The ST have had a couple of good articles recently regarding the increasing criticism the government is coming under from the farming sector about potential changes to Irish Farming as a result of meeting emissions targets.

There was a good one on Richard Bruton's dealings with the IFA last week and this week, Conor Brady has an opinion piece about it:

"This will not be easily achieved. Some sense of what is looming might be gleaned from the angry farmer response when Leo Varadkar, the taoiseach, suggested he might eat less meat in future. Or it might be measured in the recent exchanges between the environment minister Richard Bruton and the Irish Farmer's Association ( IFA ). There must be a change "in the way farming thinks about itself", Bruton declared, only to be met with flat rejection, led by the IFA president Joe Healy, who asserts that agriculture is being "unfairly singled out" in the national mitigation plan to cut emissions.

Bruton was calmly reasonable, and acknowledged the considerable progress in reducing emissions already made by the farm sector. Yet he was also firm, telling farmers they "cannot say no to every policy tool that is being developed". The state simply cannot meet a €5.5 Billion penalty if it fails to curb emissions, the minister emphasised. And Ireland is at the bottom of the European league in emissions control"
This is going to have big repercussions for farming in Ireland in the coming years. We could be looking at a considerable reduction in the size of the national herd to try and meet these targets and that is going to have massive consequences for people involved in that sector. Loss of livelihood, decimation of the rural economy etc.

It will also mean loss of trade for Ireland to other countries.

The farming sector have been a fairly loyal constituency for FG in particular, but that could all change in the next few years. You could see farmers deserting FG over this.

Urban TDs naturally won't care too much, but rural TDs could be really under the cosh ( with apologies to Liam Neeson ). I'm thinking of the likes of Patrick O'Donovan ( FG Limerick West ), Michael Creed ( FG Cork North West ), David Stanton ( FG Cork East ), Brendan Griffin ( FG Kerry ), Both FG TDs in Clare, Both FG TDs in Wexford and many others.

Conor Brady: Big Farmer can’t stop the winds of change | Ireland | The Sunday Times
 


truthisfree

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Considering you have been posting support for Brexit for years now and that will hit Irish farmers hard, do you seriously think climate change policies is on their mind right now?

Why would you care about Irish farmers being badly hit by policies to do with climate change when you support Brexit policies that are going to hit them in the coming months. Trying to convince a few Farmers to Irexit? :roflmao: Good luck with that :roflmao:
 

flavirostris

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My answer to that would be why do we keep hearing about the threat to Irish farming posed by Brexit when FG plan to destroy Irish farming through emissions mitigation strategies anyway?
 

TweetyBird

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It's a valid point and yes FG will come under pressure. Will FF and independents offer a different strategy, possibly. The next round of CAP is going to cause the biggest row in the EU for the 2020-2027. Changes in policy with probably less money in the kitty for agriculture. Meat production requires more land than plants but requires less man power.
 

Roberto Jordan

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As I recall around 10% of the total national emission come from two facilities on the shannon estuary - Moneypoint and the Rusal plant at Aughinish.

Replacing the power generated in the former and shuttering a profitable private enterprise in the case of the latter might not be easy.

But for over a 1/3 of the total 30% reduction commitment it might be a quicker win than changing the transport network entirely or in 10 years eliminating the one sustainable ( economically) industry based on natural resources .

That being said there is a conversation to be had on the long term direction of agriculture in Ireland. I read surprisingly on twitter recently of the massive growth in herds that are held in high intensity feedlots. this seems completely "off brand" with what Irish produced food should be trying to do. And , in context of this topic, a retrograde step to produce a lower margin product.

Plus in the very long term , and I am sure far smarter guys than me or any of the frauds masquerading in economists in the Irish media and NGO sector can run an estimate, there is a question of whether demographic growth & expansion of consumption in developing nations can , or to what extent will, forestall the impact of an inevitable long term decline in the per capita consumption of meat & dairy in the developed world.
 

Catalpast

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I notice that Fingal Co Council [which incls. many farms in the north of the County is opening a public consultation on its Plan to combat Climate Change:

Climate Change
A Strategy Towards Climate Change Action Plans for the Dublin Local Authorities has been published

Climate Change : : Fingal County Council

I cant help feeling end result will be an increase in Property Taxes and Bin Charges etc to cover all this.

Yet the contribution of Fingal residents to 'Climate Change' could only be described as minimalist
 

hollandia

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My answer to that would be why do we keep hearing about the threat to Irish farming posed by Brexit when FG plan to destroy Irish farming through emissions mitigation strategies anyway?
Have you got a link to this plan? Some sort of policy document, perhaps? Maybe a link to to video of a top-hatted and monocle wearing FG'er laughing maniacally whilst saying "We will crush Irish Farming, mwahahahahaha...?". Of course you haven't. Because you have put 2 and 2 together and got 22.
 

parentheses

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Maybe this explains why Fine Gael are so apparently nonchalent about a hard Brexit.

Hard Brexit would do a lot of damage to Irish agriculture in a very short time.
 

Roberto Jordan

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I notice that Fingal Co Council [which incls. many farms in the north of the County is opening a public consultation on its Plan to combat Climate Change:

Climate Change
A Strategy Towards Climate Change Action Plans for the Dublin Local Authorities has been published

Climate Change : : Fingal County Council

I cant help feeling end result will be an increase in Property Taxes and Bin Charges etc to cover all this.

Yet the contribution of Fingal residents to 'Climate Change' could only be described as minimalist
Farms in north dublin tend to be tillage and market crops though right? Dairy and beef herds are the main contributors in ag. (if and more so one ignores the indirect emissions from fertilizer production )
 

TweetyBird

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Farms in north dublin tend to be tillage and market crops though right? Dairy and beef herds are the main contributors in ag. (if and more so one ignores the indirect emissions from fertilizer production )
In terms of water pollution, agriculture is either a sole or partial contributor along with another pollutant source in 65% of waters. New or upgraded wastewater treatments plans is actively being invested in to deal or minimise that source of pollution for example.
 

hollandia

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Farms in north dublin tend to be tillage and market crops though right? Dairy and beef herds are the main contributors in ag. (if and more so one ignores the indirect emissions from fertilizer production )
Tillage and Market crops also require fertilisers at times - aka Nitrates.
 

Sync

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People should be able to engage in whatever business they want as long as it's legal and they're self employed.

Farmers aren't really self employed. They recieve 1.5 billion in support a year in Ireland alone. So if the elected govts of the day decides that the future of the sustainability of the human race is going to be eating crickets, then guess what? You're going to stop breeding sheep and you're going to breed crickets. And if you don't like that, that's entirely your right. Refuse the CAP and do your thing. Live your best life.
 

McTell

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No
Good article in the Indo on this by John Heney, link below.

The row about beef is looking at american "feedlots" where animals are kept in sheds and fed corn. Add up the costs of growing and hauling the corn, and of course the C02 and aquifer water needed to finish each animal is high over there.

But the Usa is not Ireland. Here we have plenty of water and grass, with a small amount of corn fed to animals, mostly in the winter.

No animal fattening on grass here means 2 choices - lots more tillage for vegan diets, which will be more C02 intensive, or "wilding" which is letting nature take over. Wilding is not a soft option because rotting greenery puts out lots of methane, which is worse than C02.

And of course thousands of jobs in transport, machinery sales and repairs, vet practices, butchers, health and safety, and farmers themselves, and many rural communities, will be gone and all their skills lost forever.

And zillions of votes lost to whatever party proposes this radical change.


Beware of jargon and agendas when dealing with - FarmIreland.ie
 

Roberto Jordan

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Good article in the Indo on this by John Heney, link below.

The row about beef is looking at american "feedlots" where animals are kept in sheds and fed corn. Add up the costs of growing and hauling the corn, and of course the C02 and aquifer water needed to finish each animal is high over there.

But the Usa is not Ireland. Here we have plenty of water and grass, with a small amount of corn fed to animals, mostly in the winter.

No animal fattening on grass here means 2 choices - lots more tillage for vegan diets, which will be more C02 intensive, or "wilding" which is letting nature take over. Wilding is not a soft option because rotting greenery puts out lots of methane, which is worse than C02.

And of course thousands of jobs in transport, machinery sales and repairs, vet practices, butchers, health and safety, and farmers themselves, and many rural communities, will be gone and all their skills lost forever.

And zillions of votes lost to whatever party proposes this radical change.


Beware of jargon and agendas when dealing with - FarmIreland.ie
Check out the nascent beginnings of feedlot based intensification in ireland tht i referred to earlier. As I mentioned its a retrograde move from a brand, environment and margin point of view.
Its not a large piece of teh puzzle at the moment but indicates that there is lack of recognition in industry of what the future strategic positioning should be.
 

Roberto Jordan

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In terms of water pollution, agriculture is either a sole or partial contributor along with another pollutant source in 65% of waters. New or upgraded wastewater treatments plans is actively being invested in to deal or minimise that source of pollution for example.
Sure. But i was making the point in regard to direct emissions. i.e. easier for Fingal to do it than a council in teh golden vale as herd limitations etc. will not impact their farmers
 

owedtojoy

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My answer to that would be why do we keep hearing about the threat to Irish farming posed by Brexit when FG plan to destroy Irish farming through emissions mitigation strategies anyway?
So you believe the Gospel According to the Sunday Times, a big pusher of climate change denial in the past ....

You probably do not have the guts to admit your own denial of climate change.

Because if you agree climate change is happening, then you must agree we have to address it ....

... and that means Irish Agriculture has to do its bit.
 

clearmurk

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So you believe the Gospel According to the Sunday Times, a big pusher of climate change denial in the past ....

You probably do not have the guts to admit your own denial of climate change.

Because if you agree climate change is happening, then you must agree we have to address it ....

... and that means Irish Agriculture has to do its bit.
Of course the climate changes all the time, on both short and long cycles.

But it is only the religious nut-jobs who believe that they can control it.
 

clearmurk

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People should be able to engage in whatever business they want as long as it's legal and they're self employed.

Farmers aren't really self employed. They recieve 1.5 billion in support a year in Ireland alone. So if the elected govts of the day decides that the future of the sustainability of the human race is going to be eating crickets, then guess what? You're going to stop breeding sheep and you're going to breed crickets. And if you don't like that, that's entirely your right. Refuse the CAP and do your thing. Live your best life.
Why is the government planting data centres all over the place if CO2 is a problem? The electricity consumed by each is enough to power a small town.

What is the level of subsidy being provided to these? Quite apart from grants from the likes of the IDA, each wind powered MWhr is subsidised directly by something like €15, not to mention the billions that are being spent by the public on providing network connectivity for them, together with the parallel gerneration system needed for when the renewables are not available.

Maybe it's just that the metro-sexuals don't do farming.
 

Sync

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I think that's a valid point and something that needs to be calculated every time approval's given for one of these data centres. You seem to be trying to set this up as an A vs B issue which this isn't though. There are various streams of the economy that work long term, there are various ones that won't. A govt's job is to try and address the latter. Farming's actually easier to do logistically because of the very high subsidies given.

Those who pay the piper call the tune.
 


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