The IFA president Tim Cullinan voiced apprehension at the passing of the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Bill through the Dáil without the house amending the legislation.

“We believe the bill would have benefitted from the further clarity that our proposed amendments would have brought,” commented Cullinan.

“There were 111 amendments to be decided, but the debate was guillotined as the second amendment was being discussed. It’s an affront to democracy,” he said.

The comments came after Wednesday's IFA protest in Dublin.

Accountability

Cullinan also stated that it is the IFA’s intention to hold policymakers accountable for any commitments made to the farm organisation in amending the bill.

“Over the last few days, the IFA has received assurances from Government TDs that the concerns we have raised are addressed implicitly in the bill,” claimed Cullinan.

“However, we will hold the minister and Government deputies to undertakings they have given, particularly in relation to carbon budgets taking account of sequestration as well as emissions,” he said.

The bill was passed by a vote with 129 deputies in favour and 10 against.

Farmers’ commitment

“This is the best country in the world to produce food. We will continue to fight to ensure that every farmer can continue to earn a living and not have their livestock numbers cut or restricted,” Cullinan continued.

“Farmers will continue to play our part on climate action by adopting technologies which reduce methane and contribute positively to water quality and biodiversity. But targets for our sector must be realistic and achievable,” he finished.

An explainer on what the bill will mean for farmers can be found here.