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Northern Ireland Environment Link Logo
 

News

 

Events

 

Mar 2018 right left

   
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Hedge Planting

Sunday 4th March
Gilford Castle, Gilford Village, Co–Armagh
Free

Belfast Festival of Learning

Monday 5th March
Various, see programme for details
Free

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Woodland Management – Saintfield Estate

Sunday 18th March
Saintfield Estate, Saintfield
Free

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The Rivers Trust Spring Conference 2018

Wednesday 21st March
Iveagh House, Saint Stephen’s Green, Dublin
Free

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NI Allotment and Community Garden Forum

Saturday 24th March
MACCA Centre, Omagh

Easter Fun At Monkstown Wood

Saturday 24th March
Monkstown Wood, Newtownabbey
See website for details

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Outdoor Recreation & Your Community

Tuesday 27th March
An Creagán Centre, County Tyrone

EU Funding for Sustainable Development – Project Ideas Lab

Wednesday 28th March
Sustainable NI, Bradford Court, Upper Galwally, Belfast BT8 6RB
Free

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Agriculture

Approximately 75% of Northern Ireland’s land is used for agriculture. As well as providing our food, it supports our rural communities and provides many public goods and services such as biodiversity, clean water and healthy soils.

Agriculture

The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is one of the most powerful factors influencing how our agricultural land is managed. It is currently undergoing a programme of reform, the implications of which will have major consequences for the quality of land management and the delivery of public goods and services by agriculture in the future. The CAP for 2015–2020 should support a more balanced, targeted and environmentally sustainable support programme to address issues such as food security, environmental degradation and climate change. CAP reform measures must include tools that will help restore and enhance the natural and historic environment, creating ecological networks at a landscape–scale to achieve multiple benefits over wide areas of countryside. This reform is necessary to meet the environmental challenges we face, not least the challenge posed by climate change and the need to improve resource efficiency and foster a low carbon climate resilient economy in agriculture, food and forestry.

Agricultural land can provide multiple benefits to society. How we use such land can play a pivotal role in climate change mitigation and adaptation, halting biodiversity loss, flood reduction, supporting productive agriculture and shaping places where people want to live and work.

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Representing 14.5 percent of human–induced GHG emissions, the livestock sector plays an important role in climate change.

Agricultural policy costs €57.7billion annually – 40% of the EU budget.

The water footprint of agricultural products contributes by far the largest fraction of the total water footprint of EU27+1.

77% of European citizens want more environmental conditions attached to CAP payments.

16 million Europeans depend on food aid from charitable organizations.

Over the last 10 years, employment in farming has dropped by 25% with an overall loss of 3.7 million jobs.

Annually 90 million tonnes of food, or 179kg per person, or 50% of all edible and healthy food is wasted in EU households, supermarkets, restaurants and along the food supply chain.

The average European household contributes €277 per year to the Common Agricultural Policy (or €1,939 between the period 2007–2013).

The cost of soil degradation is estimated at €38billion annually.

20% of all private sector employment in Northern Ireland is in the Agri–Food sector.

The farming and processing industries contribute around £1billion per annum of value added to the local economy.

Agricultural activity contributes around 26% of total greenhouse gas emissions in Northern Ireland.

Farm numbers and incomes have been declining in real terms for the past 28 years, while Northern Ireland’s primary agricultural outputs are livestock and dairy products, for both local consumption and export.

Arable production has continued to decline since 1981. Potatoes, apples and mushrooms are the main crops for human use, with wheat, arable crop silage and other crops increasing in recent years.

The value of farmland has been increasing rapidly since the mid–1990s to nearly £20,000/ha.

10% of Northern Ireland is woodland. 0.75% of NI is ancient woodland.

In 2011, 444,000 hectares (approximately 40%) of the farmed area in Northern Ireland was managed through the Northern Ireland Countryside Management Scheme (NICMS), the Environmentally Sensitive Areas Scheme (ESAS) and the Organic Farming Scheme (OFS).