Friday, 6 September 2019

Questions (1407)

Eamon Scanlon


1407. Deputy Eamon Scanlon asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine his plans to make grants available to persons to replant land on which trees have been felled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [35603/19]

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Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

My Department provides generous grants and premiums for the establishment of new forests under the Forestry Programme 2014 - 2020. The full cost of establishment is covered and 15 annual premium payments are made to the landowner. Total payments under the afforestation scheme for a native woodland forest, for example, can amount to over €16,000 per hectare.

The proceeds of a landowner's timber asset at clearfell more than covers the cost of reforestation. According to the Department's "Felling Decision Support Tool", the value of a crop of Sitka spruce, yield class 20, felled at year 43 and thinned on three occasions is over €30,000 per hectare whereas replanting costs are considerably lower than this. In any case, the clearfell proceeds are tax-free for the landowner which is part of national forestry policy, part of which is intended to cover the cost of reforestation.