Opinion: We will pay a high price for ignoring the impact of illegal slurry spreading
I hated the approach to discipline that some teachers took (and some still do, I believe!). He/she would be going out of the classroom and tell everyone to be quiet. A few smart-alecs would always act up and, instead of going after the culprits, everyone would be punished.
This thought crossed my mind as I drove around the country over the past number of weeks, seeing clear evidence that slurry had been spread. The closed period did not end anywhere before last Saturday.
Those spreading slurry were not acting the maggot - the simple reality is that their tanks were full and they had to get some slurry away.
This is a carryover from last year's weather.
Many farmers had slurry left in their tanks going into the winter.
However, it can't be ignored that, with the exception of 2013, in every other year of the current decade, there have been calls for delaying the start of the closed period.
Hopefully, the floods which decimated Donegal last August will not be seen again for some time, but climate change is real. There will be higher rainfall, more extreme weather events and greater unpredictability.
I know there are those who think I have a set against dairy farmers but, since quotas ended almost three years ago, many farmers have significantly increased cow numbers.