Commenting on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, John Comer, the President of the Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers Association (ICMSA) said that it was important that reactions to the reality of climate change were not of the ‘one-size-fits-all’ category and that attempts to deal with the changes undoubtedly already underway took account of individual state’s circumstances.
Mr Comer said that while farmers were more aware than most of the implications of climate change and stood to feel the effects first, it was critical that the report did not become some form of stick with which our hugely important farming and agri-export sector was going to be beaten.
He said that the same science that measured the progress of climate change must now be used to argue that those states that could produce food with the least environmental impact should be those states where food production was supported. In that context, it was crucial to note that food production in this country was proportionally much less environmentally damaging than in almost any other EU Member State, while the value of the food produced in export terms was proportionately more important. Against that background, Mr Comer said, it was vital that the Irish Government insisted that any kind of ‘equity of contribution’ in emissions reduction introduced by the EU Commission took account of the relative cost of food production in different states as well as the relative importance of that food production to the state.
Ireland must not permit itself to be ‘bounced’ into an across-the-board, crude, emissions reduction system that nullified the our scientifically proven advantages in food production for the sake of some questionable definition of ‘equity of contribution’ which was regrettably the direction the latest EU Commission proposals seemed to be taking
Ends 31 March 2014.
John Comer, 087-2057846
Cathal MacCarthy, 087-6168758
ICMSA Press Office