Eu 2030 Climate and Energy Package Fails to Recognise the Need for a Balance Between Climate Policy and Sustainable Food Production – IFA

IFA President Eddie Downey has described the EU framework on climate and energy for 2030 announced today as a repeat of the same mistakes made in climate policy when previous emission reduction targets were set.

“The failure by the Commission to recognise the need to support the development of emission efficient and sustainable food production is a continuation of inadequate climate policy at EU level. Ireland, like many other EU member states, produces food to the highest environmental standards, with greenhouse gas emissions per kilo of product amongst the lowest in the world.”

“The global population is increasing and there is growing demand for protein foods like beef and milk that farmers in Ireland produce sustainably. This EU framework plan has failed to address the issue of carbon leakage as it relates to agriculture. Unless it is addressed, sustainable food produced in Ireland will be displaced by food from former Amazonian rainforest lands in South America.”

“The EU Council and European Parliament have been asked to agree to further emission reduction targets this year. However, this must not be allowed to be take place until a better balance is achieved between food production and climate policy, at EU level and in the international negotiations.”

“The increased EU renewable energy target of 27% by 2030 can only be achieved in Ireland if the existing REFIT and biofuel obligation scheme is radically overhauled. Many farmers have now lost confidence in Government’s biomass and land based renewables policy, diverting lands back into grassland from bio-energy production, having suffered substantial financial losses.”

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