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The Explainer: Why is there so much talk about Ireland's cows right now?

You guessed it – it’s climate change related.

COWS. BOVINES. STEERS. Sucklers. Whatever you call them (and yes – before I get emails, we do explain the differences on this episode…), cows are getting a lot of focus in the discussion on climate change.

You won’t have been able to miss, for example, talk of Ireland’s national herd, and how reducing it might help climate change.

Or the ongoing discussion around methane emissions, and how Ireland’s cows are part of that.

But if you’ve been a little confused about cows, their role in climate change and what Ireland’s farmers need to do, this podcast episode is for you. We speak to Trevor Donnellan, head of economics at Teagasc, the agriculture and food development authority, which is a semi-state body, about cows, how they contribute to emissions and what can be done by farmers to help. 

We also chat to our reporter Orla Dwyer on the episode – she’s been reporting from COP26 in Glasgow as part of this cycle of The Good Information Project, which has been looking at the topic of climate change. 

She fills us in on where cows came into the discussion there – and what it’s been like to attend the busy and at times controversial event. 

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Source: The Explainer/SoundCloud

This episode was put together by presenter Sinéad O’Carroll, and producers Aoife Barry and Nicky Ryan.

The Good Information Project’s work is co-funded by Journal Media and a grant programme from the European Parliament. Any opinions or conclusions expressed in this work is the author’s own. The European Parliament has no involvement in nor responsibility for the editorial content published by the project. For more information, see here

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