News

Farmer-led groups to combat climate change

Published: 22 Dec 2020 13:45

Making agriculture more sustainable.

Two new farmer-led groups are being established to develop advice and proposals to the Scottish Government on how to cut emissions and tackle climate change as reaffirmed in the recently published Climate Change Plan.

They will focus on the dairy and high nature value sectors. The Dairy Group will be chaired by Jackie McCreery, Director of the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland and the Royal Highland Educational Trust, with the Hill, Upland and Crofting Group (HUCG) being co-chaired by Martin Kennedy, Vice President of NFUS and Joyce Campbell, chair of Women in Agriculture taskforce.

The formation of these groups brings the total number of farmer-led climate groups to five, following on from the Industry led Pig Sector group, the Arable sector group, which met for the first time in December and the Suckler Beef Climate Group which has already published recommendations and a separate programme board has now been set up to take these forward.

Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing said:

“I am pleased to be announcing the chairs of the new Dairy Group and HUCG. Setting up these groups is a Programme for Government commitment and they will help to reduce emissions and tackling climate change, which has long been a priority for Scotland, shown in our world-leading, ambitious targets.

“I look forward to working closely alongside the new chairs of the groups. Martin Kennedy, himself a tenant farmer, brings a wealth of experience and leadership to the role and will co-chair the HUCG, alongside Joyce Campbell, a knowledgeable crofter with vast experience of teaching others. Jackie McCreery, a partner in a dairy and arable farm, will chair the Dairy Group. Her rural background and extensive knowledge will be hugely beneficial. All three chairs will relish the opportunity to work together and identify practical solutions to meet our goals. I look forward to seeing their outputs in the near future.

“We know there is a lot of work to be done, work will begin right away as we come together to develop a strategy to reach our ambitious targets.”

Background

Climate Change Plan 2018-2032 – update

Farmer-led groups to tackle climate change

Martin Kennedy is a tenant farmer in Highland Perthshire. He served two years as Highland Perthshire branch chairman, before representing East Central region on the LFA committee in 2009. Martin then went on to be vice chairman then chaired the committee for three years.

Joyce Campbell runs a family-run hill farm on the north coast of Sutherland. Joyce was awarded the Associate of the Royal Agricultural Societies (ARAgS) in January 2017, in recognition of her distinguished achievement in agriculture.

Jackie McCreery is a partner in the McCreery family dairy and arable farm in East Lothian She and her husband, Simon, also run an on-farm processing dairy. Jackie is a Director of the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland and the Royal Highland Educational Trust.