Irish Beef Industry Under Pressure as Government Considers Reductions to Meet Climate Targets

Ireland is considering reducing its cattle herds by 200,000 over the next three years in order to meet climate targets.

European governments have been targeting the agriculture industry for several years to reduce nitrogen pollution.

The US Department of Agriculture is now being targeted by the Biden administration as part of the solution to meet net-zero emissions.

The conversation on emissions from the industry is not considering the beneficial impacts of cattle on the environment and the climate, such as drought resistance, soil health, and wildfire reduction.

Cattle also benefit plant life and through proper grazing management, their emissions break down into carbon dioxide which is trapped in the ground and used by the plants.

The article discusses the impact of closing farms in North America and Europe on food production and the environment.

The speaker, Moline, suggests that food production will shift to countries with lax environmental regulations, leading to less environmentally friendly farming practices and potentially adversely affecting the global food supply.

Atkinson points out that the issue is more complex than just blaming climate change for all environmental issues, as ecological conditions can vary greatly and climate changes over time.

Additionally, Atkinson highlights the importance of cattle as a source of food, as well as a number of everyday products, such as laundry detergent and footballs.

Finally, the article reports that one in eight people in the US are food insecure, and removing cattle would exacerbate this problem.