Written Answers. - Special Areas of Conservation.

Trevor Sargent

Question:

775 Mr. Sargent asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands the plans, if any, she has to include raised bogs as special areas of conservation in any future list in view of the fact that 81 per cent of bogs have already been destroyed; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1514/99]

I refer the Deputy to my replies to Question No. 33 of 7 May 1998 and Question No. 19 of 15 October 1998. The position remains as outlined in those replies.

Trevor Sargent

Question:

776 Mr. Sargent asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands the reason raised bogs sites were not included in the list of special areas of conservation submitted to the European Commission; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1515/99]

My Department has publicly advertised 207 special areas of conservation (SACs) to date and has transmitted 48 of these to the EU Commission. All land owners and land users affected by the proposals have been afforded an opportunity to appeal, on scientific grounds, against the inclusion of their lands in these sites. This process is ongoing and appeals are outstanding in relation to almost all proposed candidate raised bog sites.

Further sites will be transmitted to the EU Commission as appeals are processed by the appeals system and the necessary paperwork completed.