July 12, 2023 | Teagasc, Ireland | Source 

Teagasc, the Agriculture and Food Development Authority –the national body providing integrated research, advisory and training services to the agriculture and food industry and rural communities, has introduced the Marginal Abatement Cost Curve (MACC) to assist the agriculture industry in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The MACC aims to provide cost-effective pathways for GHG reduction and carbon sequestration within the agricultural sector. Key findings from the MACC indicate the importance of maximizing the adoption of GHG mitigation measures to meet emissions reduction targets. Different scenarios and adoption rates for mitigation measures were explored, highlighting the potential role of diversification into organic farming, increased tillage and forestry, and biomethane feedstock production in achieving emissions targets.

While reductions in GHG emissions from Land Use, Land Use Change & Forestry (LULUCF) were challenging to achieve due to uncertainties in inventory emission factors, the MACC emphasizes the significance of bioenergy production, particularly biomethane and woody biomass, in decarbonizing Ireland's energy sector. The report also underscores the need for increased advisory and extension services to guide farmers and landowners toward reduced GHG emissions and climate neutrality.

The Teagasc MACC represents a dynamic tool that evolves with ongoing research and changing socio-economic conditions, reflecting the fluid nature of GHG abatement potential and associated costs. Different agricultural activity scenarios and adoption pathways were considered to provide insights into cost-effective emissions reduction strategies.