Committee & Contacts

Cross Sectors
Environment & Rural Affairs
Committee & Contacts

Chairman IFA Environment & Rural Affairs Committee

Paul O’Brien

086 8859277




Paul is a sheep and tillage farmer from Graignamanagh, Co. Kilkenny. He has been a member of the Environment committee since 2017. Other roles in IFA include Secretary and Chairman of the Graignamanagh branch, as well as serving as Co. Kilkenny Secretary and Vice Chairman.

Paul is married to Carol and they have two sons and a daughter.

Executive IFA Environment & Rural Affairs Committee

Thomas Ryan

Thomas Ryan is the Environment and Infrastructure Executive with the Irish Farmers’ Association. He is a graduate of University College Dublin, Dublin Institute of Technology and the Irish Management Institute. He holds degrees in Agricultural Science and Property Studies and a diploma in Business Management. He previously worked with Kerry Group plc and currently represents IFA on two recycling organisations IFFPG and Farm Plastic Recycling Ltd. He is an associate member of the Society of Chartered Surveyors of Ireland and a member of the Agricultural Science Association and Irish Environmental Law Association. He is also the Programme Manager of the on-farm voluntary cost saving initiative, Smart Farming.

The roles of the Environment & Rural Affairs Committee include:

  • Removing unnecessary and excessive bureaucracy which is being imposed on farmers.
  • Creating a greater understanding that farmers in recent years have spent over €2.5bn ensuring that their farms conform to the highest environmental standards and have the most emission efficient food production system in Europe.

Other important issues are:

  • Ensuring proposed climate legislation does not hinder the development of the sustainable agri-food sector.
  • Securing changes to existing hedge cutting dates.
  • On-going support of farm families impacted by infrastructure projects.
  • Opposing unjustifiable changes being imposed on rural dwellers.
  • Seeking a more practical solution to the on-going farming by date and slurry spreading difficulties.
  • Continuing to identify on-farm cost savings through the voluntary Smart Farming initiative.

Environment & Rural Affairs Committee

CHAIRMAN Paul O’Brien 086 8859277
V’ CHAIRMAN Chris Hayes 086 2497042
CARLOW George Byrne 086 8260694
CAVAN Paddy Denning 087 2576441
CLARE Kieran Woods 086 3708833
CORK (C) Gerard O’Connell 086 8557297
CORK (N) Tony Mullins 086 8186336
CORK (W) Chris Hayes 086 2497042
DONEGAL Francis Burns 086 3627146
DUBLIN Seamus McGrath 086 8404610
GALWAY Henry Walsh 087 2302537
KERRY John O’Sullivan 087 9940890
KILDARE Austin Morrin 087 2232809
KILKENNY James Murphy 086 8590430
LAOIS Owen Conroy 086 3470182
LEITRIM Eddie Mitchell 087 2239972
LIMERICK Barry Muprhy 086 8577260
LONGFORD Damien O’Reilly 086 8042 380
LOUTH Breeda Tuite 086 6062005
MAYO John Davitt 087 6541853
MEATH Seamus McGee 086 8630985
MONAGHAN Bernard Treanor 087 9267766
OFFALY Enda Bracken 087 6526315
ROSCOMMON Ned O’Connor 086 2441024
SLIGO Bernie Finan 087 2273224
TIPP. NTH Eamonn Cleary 087 245 0192
TIPP. STH Peter Farrell 087 2324033
WATERFORD John J. Byrne 086 6034572
WESTMEATH Adrian Elliott 086 8196414
WEXFORD James Brennan 087 8139819
WICKLOW David Johnson 086 8540658
Co-opt Thomas Cooney 087 2903 811
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