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Better cows here than on cleared rainforest



  • Registered Users Posts: 7,015 ✭✭✭timmyntc

    Well then you fundamentally misunderstand the premise, because in this scenario the net cattle numbers do not change. They merely move from irish grass fed to brazilian ranches made out of burnt rainforest.

    Once again, Do you disagree with the statement that growing more beef in brazil to make up for less beef in Ireland, would be worse for the climate?

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 38,287 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    The premise is ridiculous. Why would you need to grow more beef in Brazil to make up for less in Ireland when there's a whole continent at Ireland's doorstep?

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,618 ✭✭✭El Tarangu

    It would depend, I suppose, on the degree of emissions generated in shipping all the tonnes of Brazilian soy to feed the cattle in Ireland, versus the emissions generated by Brazilian cows consuming this same soy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,015 ✭✭✭timmyntc

    The whole continent is due to cut herd numbers

    Brazil on the otherhand is due to grow to meet global demand. Brazilian beef is cheap, and exported worldwide (Irish beef also goes worldwide)

    Irelands loss could be Brazils gain. Nothing ridiculous about it.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 38,287 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    The premise of the OP is that fewer cows in Ireland will exacerbate climate change. That premise is absurd.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,697 ✭✭✭✭Danzy


    You are being a bit disingenuous and I think you know it.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 38,287 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    I'm just asking questions. All I've gotten back are snide comments.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

  • Registered Users Posts: 676 ✭✭✭Esho

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,363 ✭✭✭dePeatrick

    Isn’t all of the EU being asked to produce less beef? Certainly not too happy about it in the Netherlands.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,015 ✭✭✭timmyntc

    If you read this post:


    Is it not better for beef to belch away in Ireland to feed demand, rather than to belch on cleared rainforest or in air-conditioned warehouses?

    Think globally , act locally - why reduce the national herd when it will mean an overall worse impact on climate change?

    and the conclusion you come to is that its about less cows globally, you are being disingenuous.

    Even the thread title:

    "Better cows here than on cleared rainforest"

    Its so painfully obvious what the premise here is. You must have had a hard time in English class 🤣

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  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 38,287 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    Is it? Gas emissions are due to be cut but Europeans are eating less meat so I see no reasons to import beef from Brazil.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,697 ✭✭✭✭Danzy

    Comparing the production of beef in Ireland and continental Europe is like comparing the growing of wine grapes in Ballydehob Vs Bordeaux.

    Easy to do if you know next to nothing about growing grapes in either.

    A lot of this debate is driven by people who know nothing about food production, the part weather plays, that soil types play.

    If you can't understand why East Cork is tillage and poorer land by comparison in North Cork is dairy and more valuable production wise then you don't know very basic reality about growing produce, of any kind. Yet the same East Cork land if in North Cork would Excel in production.

    It's not just beef and dairy, many of the activists haven't even the barest understanding about veg and fruit as well.

    Has anyone else in this thread experience in commercial farming , organic and otherwise of livestock and vegetables?

    Vegetables, they come from the shop, don't they?

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 38,287 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    More snide comments and typical denialist drivel. As has been pointed out, this absurd premise makes several shaky assumptions which are by no means guaranteed.

    The claim was that fewer cows in Ireland would contribute to climate change. You've disingenuously rewrote it but this, being a text-based site makes this exercise in deceit rather pointless.

    No evidence after multiple requests. I'll consider this debunked now.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,697 ✭✭✭✭Danzy

    The EU commission disagree with you on importing Brazilian beef but that is neither here nor there.

    Beef is a fungible commodity.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,363 ✭✭✭dePeatrick

    Greenpeace aim to reduce beef production by 71% by 2030, that’s way more than the natural decline in consumption. So we will end up eating beef from Brazil.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,015 ✭✭✭timmyntc

    Can you point out what parts I have "disingenuously rewrote"?

    No evidence after multiple requests. I'll consider this debunked now.

    🤣 The man of science announces he has debunked something in the absence of evidence - sounds a lot more like faith and blind belief

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,442 ✭✭✭bad2thebone

    Ah yes the cow problem, it's all part of the green energy agenda.

    Ok we'll rare more sheep instead. Ah no you can't do that either. How about Wagyu then, well now that's not applicable either.

    Meanwhile there's organic matter letting off gasses allover the place during the Autumn, well you see.... they let off methane in small doses incrementaly.

    Ok then you've a problem on your hands.

    Farmers will come up trump's no matter what, they'll put the country to a halt. Rightly so.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,872 ✭✭✭fly_agaric

    I don't...I do remember, I did not realise you were involved in agriculture somehow when I responded a bit sarcastically to a comment of yours (a long time ago now) where you were bemoaning terrible ignorance of, and lack of respect (or even a hatred) for farming & agriculture out among the public...

    I still think you are overly cynical (?), certainly when it comes to the public in Ireland, I am not sure why?

    Are you paying too much attention to loud mouths (or trolls/bots!?) over on the exact opposite pov from you, spouting rubbish about farmers + green issues on social media? They won't reflect the general public IMO.

    I genuinely think most people in Ireland are still well aware of how important agriculture is to us all + don't have some extremist deep-green viewpoint, where they want the national herd culled to nothing + all the beef & dairy farmers pensioned off and the whole lot reforested and "rewilded" etc!

    There's supposed to be some kind of climate/CO2 adjustment mechanism coming in for imports to the EU, but I haven't read up much on the details of it. (edit: a quick google, and I see such food imports would not be covered by what is planned)

    I suppose agricultural products are a special case (in that sector is quite protected from alot of non EU imports?), but would have though it should apply to things like meat produced in Brazil (so it will have, effectively extra "climate" related EU tariffs on it making it an expensive product).

    Really politicians have to level with people and if there's these green adjustments made to food production of all sorts in the EU (e.g. less meat) there's no point just shifting the burden elsewhere. If beef production in EU starts to be reduced for example, beef consumption in EU also has to fall. It can't just be made up by getting that beef from Brazil instead etc.

  • Registered Users Posts: 81 ✭✭spontindeed

    If we go any deeper down the Green rabbit hole, we will end up like Sri Lanka with food price hikes of 70%. Sri Lanka banned all Fertilizers in 2021 and food prices are now 70% higher. The radical Green Party wants to ban Fertilizers here too! The Green Party thinks food is "too cheap". It shows the level which they're gone to justify what they're doing. It's not working. You don't want to put radical greens in charge of economic decisions. It always ends up inflationary.

    China is also opening up new Coal-Fired Power Plants every month. We have an energy crisis and now the midlands Peat-Fired Power Plants are soon to close.

  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 19,615 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell

    That is strawman argument. Brazil will have massive beef production with no concern for the environment whether Irish farmers produce any or not.

    Ireland needs to reduce our carbon emissions, and a significant level comes from agriculture - and in particular from beef & dairy production. There are measures that can be taken to mitigate the problem, and they must be taken not just now but also over the next decade. Delaying the implementation makes those mitigation steps greater and more urgent.

    Wildfires in Killiney and Wicklow are not imaginary events, they are happening not just this summer but this week. Flash floods in Derry happened this week. And the leaders of the Gov are arguing whether the cutbacks should be 22% or 30% or somewhere in between.

    And guess what, whichever they settle on will be missed by a rural mile.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 81 ✭✭spontindeed

    Speaking of wildfires, Dubai is making its own rain Drones that will give clouds an electrical charge to create rainfall. Rainmaking technology is known as "Cloud Seeding".

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,015 ✭✭✭timmyntc

    Brazil is not going to increase the size of their herd if there isnt the demand to make it worthwhile.

    When Ireland cuts its herd, all of a sudden we have less global supply but demand remains the same, so now Brazilians have incentive to increase herd numbers. They will not increase regardless, the global beef market is a market like any other and obeys the rules of supply and demand.

    Most "wildfires" in Ireland are caused by farmers burning gorse and it gets out of control, infact most wildfires globally are caused by arson, not nature. As for flooding, poor drainage practices and windfarms disturbing mountain drainage patterns has a significant impact in the severity of flooding events too. Regardless, its not the point of this thread. The point is that people want beef, after herd is cut they will still want beef. Brazil is more than happy to cut more rainforest to grow this beef.

  • Registered Users Posts: 886 ✭✭✭bb12

    more psy-ops and most people are falling for it...there's been a particular agenda to blame the "dirty filthy farmers" over the past few years for all things bad in the climate.. it's just beyond comprehension and everyone going along with farmers! the only actual people in the country who actually know anything about nature!!

    yet not one word about "dirty filthy corporations" or "dirty filthy people" leaving tons of plastic behind in parks/ beaches...endless and constantly increasing consumption of everything plastic and then hopping on all those flights .

    yeah it's all the farmers fault!

    i think a bit of hunger might be the trick needed here to set people straight again

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,851 ✭✭✭amacca

    Can you explain how taking beef animals to the factory earlier would mitigate the situation?

    As a beef farmer who has produced beef with as little inputs as possible over decades I have thought long and hard about reduced age limits and I've come to the conclusion that not only would it not mitigate the situation, it would exacerbate it and reduce my income....

    I am very interested in having it explained to me and the counterpoints I intend to make thoroughly debunked...

    I've been looking forward to someone proving me wrong for sometime now....

  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 19,615 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell


    If you want to know how to mitigate emissions, check out because they have done the research and know the answers.

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,697 ✭✭✭✭Danzy

    Completely agree.

    I've a very diverse species mix in much of my paddocks.

    The idea that going to a finish at 24 months system is compatible with the above and your system.. There is no point even trying to explain it to people advocating it. It is like saying people with a broken laptop just need to get the correct wrench, it gives it away.

    The choice will be high intensity, high artificial and external input or out under that system.

  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 19,615 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell

    Teagasc have done a lot of research on reducing emissions.

    Change of sward from rye grass to a mix of grasses to include clovers and deeper rooting varieties. This cuts down on fertilizer, and reduces run-off to water courses and into groundwater, and better drainage, and better soil structure.

    Better breeding to take advantage of the above, together with tighter management of inputs. It is increased intensity of farming that causes the high emissions.

    Farmers will need to change their ways, but already have in the past and can do so again to their benefit and the environment. There are always better ways to do things. The change from horse to tractor, from hay to silage, from taking the milk to creamery daily to the bulk tank collected every other day - all these changes have happened and no-one would go back.

    Growing their own potatoes and vegetables to buying them all i the supermarket - is a change that should be reversed. Not all changes are good for the environment. Farmers need to open their minds.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,851 ✭✭✭amacca

    I believe reduced age limits means increased intensity /intensification....I really can't see how it would mean anything else .....more heads/quicker turnover/more inputs/more emissions........

    The animal themselves that I've been working with for close on 40 years now do not put on weight naturally until they get to about 26 months, but a large proportion are fit on minimum inputs and grass at about 2/3 months after that

    Age limits are not environmentally friendly no matter how I cut it......they are merchant and industry friendly at my expense however

    As for Teagasc research.....would this be the same Teagasc that had one of its head honchos recently admitting they didn't factor in the increased number of male calves into the recent dairy expansion?? I've read a number of articles one of their main beef guys has published in the IFJ and I remain deeply unconvinced, not a single shred of convincing evidence that lowering the age of slaughter or "efficiency" as they call it will reduce GHGs never mind not drive the small sustainable producer out of business .....

    I'll happily read any article or link you suggest that proves lower age limits will reduce GHG emissions from the beef herd in Ireland here.......afaics it will push further intensification and inputs..........

    I think the reasoning used to suggest it will reduce GHG emissions to be deeply flawed if not deliberately misleading but tbh I've not seen any explicit description or explanation of how lowering age limits would reduce GHGs so its quite difficult to counter it, I'm only surmising what the justifications might be such is the lack of a coherent explanation/information on the idea..........perhaps I'm just too thick to understand

    In any event, I'm not here to insist I'm correct at all costs. If someone can explain it to me or prove it etc I'll happily admit I'm wrong. .....

    Until that happens I think I'll keep challenging anyone that blithely suggests lower age limits are any kind of solution to provide some sort of proof or backup for such a statement.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,887 ✭✭✭893bet

    Where the research to show intensive shed rear are less damaging than extensive?

    I call bullshit.

    sure they grow faster but that’s against all the carbon waste growing all the grain the eat, making and drawing all the silage and stray to feed them daily, drawing and spreading away all the shite they produce etc.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 408 ✭✭Orion402

    Ireland has a beautiful maritime climate due to its close proximity to the Atlantic among other things which give us our grasslands and some of the best beef in the world. Killing all the cows wouldn't change Ireland's maritime climate, but then again, when has common sense entered the minds of men recently. All these serious politicians and farm officials arguing over what effectively are dire conclusions generated by computer gamers who cobbled together a remarkably crude set of assertions that humanity can control the weather/temperatures by doing or not doing something.

    Every now and again a society runs with an academic bandwagon where politicians and media project imperatives that they must act on behalf of their nation and future generations to improve society. The last time that happened was the mid 19th century when the Nazis ran with the academic doctrine of natural selection where invasion and extermination was absolutely necessary for the survival of their society-

    "I could show fight on natural selection having done and doing more for the progress of civilisation than you seem inclined to admit. Remember what risks the nations of Europe ran, not so many centuries ago of being overwhelmed by the Turks, and how ridiculous such an idea now is. The more civilised so-called Caucasian races have beaten the Turkish hollow in the struggle for existence. Looking to the world at no very distant date, what an endless number of the lower races will have been eliminated by the higher civilised races throughout the world." Charles Darwin 1881

    " Under proper guidance, in the course of the final solution the Jews are to be allocated for appropriate labour in the East. Able-bodied Jews, separated according to sex, will be taken in large work columns to these areas for work on roads, in the course of which action doubtless a large portion will be eliminated by natural causes. The possible final remnant will, since it will undoubtedly consist of the most resistant portion, have to be treated accordingly, because it is the product of natural selection and would, if released, act as the seed of a new Jewish revival" Wannsee Conference, 1942

    Now it is our turn in the 21st century to face an academic doctrine which demands that humanity change the weather/temperatures. If there is a more stupid notion out there presently, I haven't seen it.