Tuesday, 2 March 2004

Questions (323)

Denis Naughten

Question:

406 Mr. Naughten asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government if he will consider the development of Sliabh Bán, County Roscommon, as a national park; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6627/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government)

Ireland has six national parks: Killarney, Glenveagh, Wicklow Mountains, Connemara, The Burren and Ballycroy National Park, County Mayo. All are State owned and lie within candidate special areas of conservation under the EU habitats directive. The IUCN, also known as the World Conservation Union, sets the internationally accepted criteria for national parks and protected areas around the world. Irish national parks are managed in accordance with these criteria by my Department's national parks and wildlife service.

Sliabh Bán has not been proposed for designation as a cSAC or a natural heritage area under the Wildlife Acts 1976 and 2000. There are no plans to establish a national park at the location.

Questions Nos. 407 and 408 answered with Question No. 396.