TD: NEW EU GREEN DIRECTIVE WILL BE AN “UTTER DISASTER” FOR FARMING
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An Independent TD has said a proposed EU green directive will prove to be an “utter disaster” for Irish agriculture if it goes ahead.
The European Commission proposal seeks to change the EU Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) so that farmers require permits to operate larger livestock farms, as reported by Agriland.ie.
The goal, according to the EU, is to combat greenhouse gas emissions coming from farms, such as methane. The proposal would mean that poultry, pig and cattle farms with 150 “livestock units” (LUs) or more would require a permit.
In a press release, the European Commission said it was seeking to “modernise” its rules around agriculture, “streamlining some aspects and updating it in line with the European Green Deal objectives.”
However, Independent Roscommon-Galway TD Michael Fitzmaurice said the police, if implemented, would be an “utter disaster” for Irish agriculture and would “hammer” the industry.
“The EU are using sleight of hand to bring in what is essentially a licence system for farming,” said Fitzmaurice.
“And once you must be licenced to do your job, you can be controlled and worse – stopped.”
Fitzmaurice also added that, because an LU does not necessarily equate to a single animal, it is conceivable that in future the definition of an LU could be changed to mean one large animal is equal to many LUs. This would mean even more farms would be affected by the policy.
“This is the EU attacking the family farm, and needs to be opposed,” Fitzmaurice said.
“If this move goes unchallenged it will only act to consolidate farming in the hands of big farmers. We need to open our eyes and see where this move is leading us.”
However, he added:
“This is not about small Irish farmers versus big Irish farmers. It is a matter of all Irish farmers against the EU and its underhanded efforts to effectively corporatise Irish farming.”
Fitzmaurice went on to warn that the consequences of this policy, if it goes ahead, “might not be felt for years after its implementation.”