The Government has adopted a new motion challenging proposed rules on the sale and supply of turf, which is due to be heard in the Dáil today.
The motion for private members – submitted by independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice – calls for a number of exemptions for those with a combination of rights to the fuel source and the sale of turf to be permitted under “the same moisture content regulations” that apply to wood and peat briquettes.
A government source confirmed to the Farming Independent that “Cabinet has agreed to accept Michael Fitzmaurice’s turf proposal”.
It comes as a motion by Sinn Féin aimed at scrapping plans to restrict sales of turf under new solid fuel regulations due to be signed in September was defeated by the government by a vote of 72 to 63 last week became.
Unlike Sinn Féin’s motion, which also aimed to scrap this month’s carbon tax hike and seek a temporary exemption from excise duty on heating oil, Mr Fitzmaurice’s motion deals solely with the ongoing turf issue.
The Roscommon-Galway representative and Chair of the Turf Cutters and Contractors Association has urged the Dáil: “Persons holding turbary rights, Q3 arrangements, simple fee rights, acquired rights, community rights to be exempted from the proposed solid fuel regulations, licenced rights, leasehold rights, inherited rights, family rights or other recognized property rights.
“Exempted from the proposed solid fuel regulations, individuals who supported the state by making their turf available for conservation as part of the turf designation and who participated in the Turf Compensation Scheme, regardless of whether they submitted their turf to the State sold, in exchange for purchase turf elsewhere, elected to be state turfed, or relocated to the moor under license or turbary right.
“Excluded from the proposed solid fuel rules are people who have had land leased or made available in the past and have saved turf for their own household.
“Commit to working with industry over a reasonable period of time to ensure that peat sold through retail outlets in major urban areas meets the same moisture content regulations as currently apply to wood and peat briquettes, and hence any proposed ban of the To ensure sales turf will not be necessary.”
A spokesman for the Environment Secretary and the Greens, Eamon Ryan, said: “Secretary Ryan has received approval from the Government not to oppose a motion by private members on rules on the sale and distribution of turf, which will be brought into the Dáil on Thursday .
“The proposed motion asks the Dáil to acknowledge a number of comments on draft domestic solid fuel regulations that have yet to be finalised.
“Although the Minister agrees with the majority of the motion, he will set out some difficulties with aspects in the Dáil on Thursday.”
https://www.independent.ie/business/farming/forestry-enviro/environment/government-accepts-fresh-motion-on-sale-and-supply-of-turf-41616793.html The government accepts a new application for the sale and supply of turf