OFFALY FUTURE FARMING FORUM- Calling Offalys Farmers!

   03 Dec 2019

On the 4th of December Green Offaly are hosting a free countywide event for the Farming
Community of Offaly. Green Offaly is a Public Participation Network initiative which is working with all sectors of Offalys Communities in order to assist in the green regeneration of the County. We are an independent Sustainable Development Trust which recognises the need for the dual process of Environmental and Economic renewal.
Farmers have always worked in partnership with and in great respect to the land.
Our Farmers are at the forefront of environmental guardianship and are doing work of
immense value in protecting our Environment. As the traditional farming paradigms are set
to shift with relation to Climate Change and the global decarbonisation of industries across
the globe, what will this mean for us, as a Midlands Farming Community?


The Changes Ahead.
Global warming is projected to have significant impacts on conditions affecting agriculture,
including temperature, precipitation and crop yields. We will be exploring the impacts of
Climate Change on Offalys agricultural sector and looking at the challenges and Economic
Opportunities arising from these changes.
The day kicks off with Alastair McKinstry (physicist and environmental lead on Climate
Modelling at the Irish Centre for High End Computing). Alastair will talk us through the
climate model projections which will outline how farming conditions are set to change with
the increased warming of the Climate. We will be given essential information about the
impacts of the changing climate on the Farming Community.


‘Respecting the Past - Growing the Future’.
Having a clearer picture of what exactly lies ahead will enable us to prepare adequately and
perhaps benefit from these changing conditions. We will be exploring opportunities for
adaptation and mitigation within the field and will be hearing from a variety of guest speakers
sharing knowledge of what they have done on their Farms and how they are benefitting from
implementing sustainable practices. We will be investigating alternative income streams for
Farmers, focusing on the reality of what income can be generated from ‘green farming’. We
will be hoping to get some important discussions going after each presentation with our
question and answer sessions.


A workshop ‘In the Field’ with Donal Sheehan.
In the afternoon, a group of Farmers are invited to join Donal to visit a local Farm. Donal
(BRIDE Project) will walk us through the steps that can be taken towards biodiversity
Regeneration in the field. Places are limited for this session so confirm your place early by
Emailing greenoffaly@gmail.com
Information from the day will be compiled into a Green Farmer’s Almanac for Offaly, available
Online or in print from next March. The Almanac will be filled with advice, links to experts,
And suggestions as to how to green up the farm.
This event is in place to help Farmers. We don’t have all the answers and we want to hear
From you, the Farmers in the Field. We think small measures taken by many are more
Attainable and realistic than huge projects etc. We are very much concentrating on the
Ground!


Speakers.
Alastair McKinstry - Physicist, Climate Modeller, Environmental Lead at Irish Centre for High
End Computing (ICHEC)
Donal Sheehan - The BRIDE Project - Biodiversity Regeneration in a Dairying Environment
Ailbhe Gerrard - Brookfield Farm - Winner of the RDS Sustainable Farming, Sustainable
Living Awards 2019
Farming for Nature, Burrenbeo Trust, Kinvara.
Noel Gavigan CEO Irbea - Bioenergy
PJ Dooley Organic Farmer
The ‘Future Farming Forum’ will be held on Weds 4th Dec in the Bridge House Hotel,
Tullamore - 10am - 4.30pm. Your MC for the day is Pat O Toole of the Irish Farming
Journal. All Farmers all welcome. Lunch provided.
Contact Rebekah or Bridie - 0894294242 / 08
Email greenoffaly@gmail.com