Rural climate change forum launched

Environment Minister Elliot Morley has launched a high level forum to tackle climate change issues in rural areas this week.

The Rural Climate Change Forum will inform policy development and research on reducing emissions of greenhouse gases from land based activities, the adaptation of land management practices to deal with climate change, and the role land management can have in managing the impacts of climate change such as increased flood events.

It will build on the experience of the former Rural Climate Change Panel and is designed to provide a forum for dialogue with the Government and authoritative advice and leadership for rural stakeholders on climate change and rural land management.

Announcing the new forum at an IPPR seminar on climate change, Mr Morley said: “We need every sector of society, whether urban or rural to play a part in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and in preparing for the changes which are already inevitable. The Forum will have a key role to play in providing advice and leadership to rural stakeholders, advice to government, and in driving forward the revised Climate Change Programme.”

John Gilliland, former president of the Ulster Farmers Union has been appointed as co-chair of the new Forum.

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