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O’Neill welcomes new strategy to reduce greenhouse gases

22 December, 2011 - by Michelle O'Neill

Minister Michelle O’Neill has today welcomed the issue of the Agriculture and Forestry Greenhouse Gas Stakeholder Group’s Reduction Strategy and Action Plan.

The Strategy and Action Plan, “Efficient Farming Cuts Greenhouse Gases”, has been developed in partnership with a number of agriculture, food and forestry stakeholders including DARD. The strategy focuses on measures that have the potential to reduce costs whilst lowering Greenhouse Gas emissions per unit of food produced and the action plan sets out the practical measures farmers can adopt. It will provide a framework that will enable the sector to grasp the challenge of meeting market needs for food whilst minimising the environmental impacts.

The Minister said: “I recognise that the land-based sector has a key role to play in the reduction of greenhouse gases and that caring for the environment is and will remain, part and parcel of production.

“This strategy and action plan will play a key role alongside other sectoral approaches in the move to a lower carbon economy where resources will be constrained by many factors outside our control.”

The Minister added: “I congratulate the agriculture and forestry sectors on their partnership approach. My Department will remain fully engaged to jointly deliver the action plan through CAFRE and by providing scientific evidence to further develop and refine mitigation measures through AFBI. The flexibility of a voluntary approach to implementation will be important in helping accommodate the inevitable changes to farming systems in the future.”

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