A host of key agri-businesses have been named on a list of the countries worst polluters.
In its quarterly ‘name and shame’ list of worst performers, the Environmental Protection Agency has listed three companies from the dairy sector which scored highly under the categories of complaints, incidents, compliance investigations and non-compliances.
The companies named were Arrabawn Co-Op, Arrow Group, Carbery Food Ingredients and Dairygold Co-op.
Reacting to the news the Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT) has called for ‘Origin Green’ Bord Bia’s sustainability programme, to be scrapped as certified companies found to be among the country’s worst polluters.
‘Origin Green’ is a marketing label promoted by An Bord Bia which claims to be the ‘world’s first national food sustainability programme’.
It was recently in receipt of €1 million in tax-payers’ money for a national advertising programme.
The agri-food sector in Ireland is the principle pressure on water pollution, habitat loss and greenhouse gas emissions in Ireland, the Wildlife Trust said.
IWT Campaigns Officer, Pádraic Fogarty said “it is time that Origin Green was exposed for the sham that it is and should be scrapped. Instead of being a tool to promote better environmental performance it is simply a smokescreen for ‘greenwashing’ the significant environmental problems which we face.
“The imminent extinction of the Curlew, for instance, can be directly linked to Fine Gael’s massive agricultural expansion programmes, something which Origin Green does nothing to address.
“Marketing initiatives, such as Origin Green, significantly hinder efforts at environmental protection by creating the false impression that all is well in the countryside,” he said.