The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed T.D., and the Minister for State, Andrew Doyle T.D., today launched a public consultation process on a draft Climate Change Adaptation Plan in the agriculture, forest and seafood sector. Adaptation is the process of preparing for the impacts of climate disruption, including, preparations for events such as flooding, fodder shortages or extreme weather storms in harbours and in forests.
Launching the plan, Minister Creed said “I am very pleased to launch this public consultation on adaptation planning. We have very much taken a joined up approach to adaptation planning across the Department and have prepared a single plan covering the agriculture, forest and seafood sector”.
The Minister went on to say that in addition to reducing our emissions, we need to ensure that our food production system is resilient and ready to adapt to future climate risk. Farmers, landowners and fishermen are very much to the forefront of dealing with the impacts of a changing climate in their everyday activities. However, climate change is not just an issue for the primary producer; it is something that everyone in the production chain needs to consider. The Irish agriculture, forest and seafood sector will not only be impacted by changes in climate here at home, but also by climate change globally”.
Speaking at the launch, Minister Doyle said “Last week saw the launch of the all of Government Plan which focused on mitigation or reducing the amount of emissions that causes climate change. This Plan is a next step in climate action planning. To successfully deal with the challenges facing us, we need to work together to make the right choices. While there will be challenges, there will also be opportunities”.
The draft Adaptation Plan highlights a number of case studies identifying how the sector has and will continue to be impacted by changing weather patterns and steps towards building resilience.
Feedback on the Plan and suggestions as to how the Department and the sector itself can best prepare to operate in a changing climate should be forwarded before the closing date of 16 August.
Note to Editors:
Ireland’s first Statutory National Adaptation Framework (NAF) was published in 2018. The NAF sets out the national strategy to reduce the vulnerability of the country to the negative effects of climate change and to avail of any positive impacts. The NAF was developed under the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Act 2015.
The NAF identified twelve key sectors required to prepare sectoral adaptation plans. The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine is responsible for three of the sectors identified – Agriculture, Forest and Seafood.
The Department published a non-statutory adaptation planning document in 2017 titled, Adaptation Planning – Developing Resilience to Climate Change in the Irish Agriculture and Forest Sector. The work undertaken as part of the development of that document provided the basis for the development of the current Plan.
The main difference this time around is the inclusion of the seafood sector as part the Plan, thereby taking a whole of Department approach to adaptation planning.
The Overall Adaptation Goal of this statutory Plan is to build resilience to the effects of climate change and weather related events in the agriculture, forestry and seafood sector, to reduce any negative impacts where possible, to take advantage of any opportunities and to contribute to the achievement of the Department’s Statement of Strategy Goals.
The Plan includes thirteen case studies to highlight some real examples of the impact of future climate change projections on the sector and steps towards building resilience to deal with these impacts. By taking steps to reduce exposure to present climate variability we can inform future climate adaptation requirements and increase resilience.
This consultation is part of a series of consultations as part of the Department’s approach to inclusive policy development.
The consultation will be open for seven weeks – the closing date 16 August 2019.
A questionnaire has been developed to assist in responding to the consultation.
All opinions are welcome and will be considered in the further development of the Adaptation Plan.
The Draft Plan is available at www.agriculture.gov.ie/customerservice/publicconsultations/