Tipperary Climate Ambassador Awarded for Outstanding Achievement

In 2022, Climate Ambassadors completed 661 climate actions, directly engaging over 274,000 people, creating 2,671 climate communications, and reaching an estimated 5.6 million people!

Tipperary Climate Ambassador Awarded for Outstanding Achievement

Tipperary Climate Ambassador Awarded for Outstanding Achievement

The Climate Ambassador Awards were held on Friday, November 18th, serving to recognise the tremendous effort and dedication demonstrated throughout the year. Each Climate Ambassador received a certificate of recognition, with an additional twelve outstanding awards presented to teams and individuals from swap shops and flash mobs, to musicians and artists, sports stars, farmers, social entrepreneurs, community activists, businesses and universities.

Tipperary Climate Ambassador Awarded for Outstanding Achievement

Ailbhe (left) with Sabina Higgins (right) in Brookfield Farm.

[CP_CALCULATED_FIELDS][CP_CALCULATED_FIELDS_VAR name=””]191 citizens were all chosen to be Climate Ambassadors in 2022. The programme, which has been in operation since 2018, has become stronger over time as Climate Ambassadors have acquired crucial skills and confidence to take action, motivating others to follow in their footsteps along the way.

Climate Ambassadors receive training at the start of the year in climate science, solutions and communications which enables them to carry out climate actions. Throughout the year they are asked to undertake four key actions – two climate communications and two climate actions, though many participants get involved in many more projects. This programme allows individuals to join a strong network of dedicated people who share knowledge, gain insight from one another, and forge long lasting relationships.

Tipperary farmer, Ailbhe Gerrard, was awarded an outstanding achievement for her dedication as a Climate Ambassador in 2022. She is an educator with a deep interest in agriculture as a creative, holistic, regenerative, collaborative activity. Field Exchange is a collaboration between the agricultural sector and arts sector in Ireland. An exchange programme of creative agricultural topics including farm design, soil fertility and inclusion was facilitated on Brookfield Farm by Ailbhe. Field Exchange engaged vision, knowledge and practical action to bring farmers, food producers, artists, experts and the interested public together to solve our urgent challenges in agriculture, biodiversity and climate.

COP27 from an Irish farmer’s perspective.

We asked Ailbhe her thoughts on the current COP27 negotiations. Agriculture and food systems – food production, processing, transporting, and consumption – have not been considered as an item at previous COPs, which is a huge omission as food systems are estimated to be responsible for a third of global anthropogenic GHG emissions. 93 countries have incorporated food systems in some way into their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs).

The connections between agriculture and climate have been acknowledged in other arenas, the Sustainable Development Goals recognise the place of farming; The EU Farm to Fork and the Green Deal highlight climate aspects of agriculture; and look to reducing food loss and waste and sustainable diets. Ireland has declared a Climate and Biodiversity Crisis, both of which are closely connected with how we farm and produce food.

Ailbhe Gerrard thinks we can resolve farming and our food system; not with big agri-business and GM technologies; but by decoupling agriculture from deforestation; empowering and engaging farmers, livestock keepers, fishers, aquaculturists, forest and woodland growers. This means embracing both traditional good practices and innovations, while building on science-based evidence. Organic farming is acknowledged as a strategy of climate and diversity friendly agricultural practices. COP needs to address and support these positive approaches; summarised by an ‘agroecological approach’ based on enriching soil, bringing communities together, planting diverse crops, considering if farmed animals are part of a sustainable food system; which species and how do they fit? In the Irish context, the role of grazing ruminants in contributing to, or mitigating climate change.

The Climate Ambassador Programme is operated by the Environmental Education Unit of An Taisce and is funded by the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications. The programme trains and supports individuals to become climate leaders in their community. The programme has trained over 800 Climate Ambassadors since 2018.

The Environmental Education Unit operates all FEE programmes in Ireland – (Green-Schools, Green-Campus, Blue Flag, LEAF, YRE) along with national education and awareness raising programmes such National Spring Clean, Clean Coasts, IBAL, Climate Ambassador, GLOBE and Neat Streets.





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