International Climate Talks Make Progress, but Challenges Remain
IFA Environment Committee Chairman Harold Kingston has described the draft international climate agreement being discussed in Paris, which includes text on food security and food production, as ‘significant statements that must ensure Ireland’s sustainable model of food production is supported to address increasing demand for emission-efficient dairy and beef produce’.
Speaking from the COP21 climate talks in Paris, he again restated, “Ireland is a world leader in sustainable food production. No other country in the world monitors, measures and manages carbon from farm to fork. This commitment to environmental improvement by so many farmers is verified by Bord Bia’s Origin Green initiative”.
“Farmers’ climate mitigation and adaption measures in Ireland should be acknowledged and not vilified by environmental groups, who would be better focused on the sectors of the economy such as transport, where emissions continue to spiral out of control, while agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions have fallen by 9% since 1990.”
IFA has joined with other members of the World Farmers Organisation and is calling for four key policy measures to be part of the final text:
- support and a positive incentive-based approach to build climate resilience through innovation and technology transfer;
- access to credit and a fair return from the market; farmers need to be profitable to invest for an increasingly uncertain future;
- a fair and ambitious financing framework, particularly for farmers in developing countries;
- acknowledgement of the multi-functional role of agriculture, as food, fuel and energy producers as well as protecting the environment must be acknowledged and enhanced.
The Association continues to monitor the discussions and ensure Ireland’s low carbon model of food production is recognised and supported.