TResearch Autumn 2018
The Future of Food
The Future of Food
Fodder still an issue
Nitrogen value and greenhouse gas footprint of digestate from anaerobic digestors - 5819
Market and non-market based strategies to reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Irish Farms - 5816
Over the next ten years an expansion in the value of Irish agriculture is projected to take place. However, the magnitude of the projected expansion is likely to be insufficient to ensure that the targets set in the Food Harvest report are achieved without the implementation of the actions recommended by the Food Harvest Committee in its Food Harvest 2020 Report.
Agriculture contributes to global balances of greenhouse gases (GHGs) through emissions of nitrous oxide and methane and through emissions and/or sequestration of carbon dioxide. In Ireland, GHG emissions from agriculture represent 29.1% of total national GHG emissions. The emission reduction target of 30% by 2020, specified in the Climate Change Response Bill, applies to national emissions. In a hypothetical scenario of proportional burden sharing across sectors, where this overall target translates into a 30% reduction target for the agricultural sector, this will have significant implications for the sustainable development of this important indigenous industry. This submission highlights key international and national issues that must be considered in preparing any GHG control instruments with a specific focus on agriculture.
The EPA has commissioned a Scoping Study to examine whether a Domestic Offsetting scheme for greenhouse gas emissions in Ireland would be economically viable and would provide a cost effective and efficient way of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Domestic offsetting is a method of enabling business to participate in a carbon market by receiving credits for the development of projects or schemes which reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Irish sectors not covered by the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (non-ETS). As part of that study, Energy Services along with Ecofys are holding a public consultation and inviting submissions from all parties that may have an interest in or knowledge of Domestic Offsetting.
The agri-food sector accounts for over half of Ireland’s indigenous exports and represents one-tenth of the Irish economy. Indeed, the wider bio-economy contributes an estimated 30% of total national net exports, and in 2008 accounted for 179,200 jobs. Agriculture also comprises a quarter of national greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, which contribute to climate change. As such, reducing emissions from the sector is often considered as a strategy to meet our emission reduction targets. However, world food security has emerged as a critical global challenge. This sets a significant challenge for Teagasc and its national and international collaborators – namely, reducing emissions while increasing food supply. Delivering this will ensure that the Irish agri-food sector can and will play a key strategic role in our economic recovery, while achieving our legally binding emission reduction targets. In addition, these challenges can provide the opportunities to drive efficiencies that will ultimately reduce costs and drive profitability in the sector.