Written Answers. - Afforestation Scheme.

121.

asked the Minister for Energy if there are any plans for the implementation of an afforestation scheme which would affect large areas of this section of the proposed Wicklow Mountains environment park.

I am aware of proposals for the afforestation of an area of land west of the Sally Gap. While grant approval has been sought in respect of it no decision has yet been made in the matter.

I might add that grant applications for lands located in areas of scientific interest are referred to the Wildlife Service of the Office of Public Works for their views before a decision is made on them. In accordance with the terms of our planting grant schemes forestry projects are not approved if it is considered that they would be detrimental to the environment.