Dairy getting a 'free pass' on climate action claim INHFA

File photo
File photo
INHFA President Colm O'Donnell. Photo Brian Farrell
Declan O'Brien

Declan O'Brien

The INHFA has questioned why the polluter pays principle is not being applied in relation to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the national cattle herd, reports Declan O'Brien.

The polluter pays principle requires that any non-compliance must be addressed at the identified source and is enshrined in the treaty for the functioning of the European Union (TFEU) the INHFA pointed out.

The hill farmer body last week demanded the suspension of the Climate Change Advisory Committee (CCAC) following their call for a major cull of suckler cows.

The INHFA accused the CCAC of giving the dairy sector a "free pass" in its latest report. The farm body claimed that by calling for cuts to suckler cow numbers while ignoring the massive expansion in the dairy herd the CCAC had damaged its credibility.

"The contradictory nature of the report is very evident in its call for a reduction in the national suckler herd to address an issue caused mainly by the dairy sector," said INHFA president, Colm O'Donnell.

"We need a full explanation on how emissions in the dairy sector are calculated and if they include the full life cycle of the dairy cow or is it only based on milk solids produced through her lactation periods.

"In addition to this we need to see if other embedded emissions generated throughout dairy products total life cycle are included such as the feeding of soya bean, higher electricity costs, transportation costs and production costs of any final product that should also factor in packaging, disposal and recycling," he added.

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