A target to drive the expansion of forestry planting on lands across Ireland has been included as part of the Government’s Climate Action Plan.

The Climate Action Plan – published today by the Government – is being described as “a far-reaching plan that sets out over 180 actions, together with hundreds of sub-actions, that need to be taken at a time when climate warning signs are growing, and the time for taking action is rapidly reducing.”

With regards to agriculture, the plan focuses on a number of ‘key’ areas.

It notes that the plan hopes to achieve an expansion of forestry planting in Ireland in an effort “to ensure that carbon abatement from land-use is delivered in 2021 – 2030 and in the years beyond”.

The delivery of “substantial verifiable greenhouse gas abatement” through the adoption of a specified range of improvements in farming practices is flagged as another key target of the plan.

Finally, the plan notes that it aims to support diversification within agriculture and land use to develop “sustainable and circular value chains and business models” for lower carbon intensity farming.

This will include an emphasis on organic production and protection and enhancement of biodiversity and water quality and the production of bio-based products and bioenergy through the Common Agricultural Policy.

Concluding, the Government statement outlined that the plan will ensure the implementation of the National Policy Statement on the bioeconomy.