€15,000 card payment for landowners in Galway’s peatland conservation scheme

Landowners in the Derrinlough Bog National Heritage Area (NHA) in Co Galway may be eligible for a €15,000 payment under a new conservation scheme.

The Protected Raised Bog Restoration Incentive Scheme introduced by the National Parks and Wildlife Service and managed by Bord na Móna (BNM) will provide eligible landowners and turbary rights holders in the region with a payment to allow access to and work on private Allow country part of another remuneration system.

The area-related one-time payment under the program is €1,450/ha (with a minimum payment of €1,000 and a maximum of €15,000) to be paid by the housing office. Notification letters issued to landowners and turbary keepers in or near the NHA said: “The Department also stands ready to purchase land or enter into land management agreements in certain cases, such as when land is subject to seasonal grazing under certain conditions. ” .

This comes as farmers continue to demand “written agreements” from BNM over its €108 million peatland restoration program which aims to convert 80,000 hectares of peatland into a carbon sink.

By the end of 2022, up to 38 state-owned bogs are expected to be rewetted under the program, with signs of protected insects and rare birds already establishing themselves at numerous sites. An estimated 8,000 hectares of peatland were rewetted last year in the first year of the program.

A BNM spokesman said: “The restoration and rehabilitation of peatlands creates rich and diverse habitats for our native plant and animal species.

“Examples of the impact of this work on biodiversity include Ireland’s only protected insect, the marsh fritillary, which is roaming the cut bogs of Bord na Móna and is now found in numerous locations.

“We visit homeowners who are living
within 1km of the bogs, providing information to interested stakeholders and arranging site visits.”

However, ICMSA President Pat McCormack claims that Bord na Móna “has not made direct contact with neighboring farmers”.

“Bord na Móna has sent details of each peatland rewetting project to ICMSA, which we have passed on to the relevant district boards and officials.

“Farmers are generally unhappy that their concerns are not being heard and that there are no written commitments to protect their position on a major land-use change.

“A written agreement is important so that if a problem arises, a farmer can be confident that the matter will be addressed in a timely manner.”

https://www.independent.ie/business/farming/forestry-enviro/environment/15000-payment-on-cards-for-landowners-in-galway-bog-conservation-scheme-41771431.html €15,000 card payment for landowners in Galway’s peatland conservation scheme

Fry Electronics Team

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