THE Ulster Farmers’ Union says the results from the weed-wiping project in the Seagahan catchment area demonstrates the positive outcomes that can be achieved when public bodies and farmers work together.
UFU president Ivor Ferguson said: “The project has been very successful and has helped to improve water quality. It is a testament to the farmers in the area who embraced this technology and to NI Water, NIEA, DAERA, CAFRE and the Voluntary Initiative for using a collaborative approach rather than regulations and penalties. It is a great example of what can be achieved when we work together constructively.”
The weed-wiping project is a NI Water initiative, supported by the NI Water Catchment Partnership, which the UFU is a member of, and the aim is to help address water quality issues in Northern Ireland related to the use of plant protection products.
Mr Ferguson says he hopes to see more of this type of partnership in future. “Caring for the environment is an important job for farmers and we take it seriously. I would hope to see the weed wiping project extended to other areas. This collaborative approach is working well and I think we can learn lessons from it when tackling other environmental issues such as ammonia and greenhouse gas emissions,” said the UFU president.