Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Ceisteanna (681)

Tony McLoughlin

Ceist:

681. Deputy Tony McLoughlin asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht if she will investigate with the National Parks and Wildlife Service, to partially withdraw aspects of the new SAC boundaries in County Sligo which it has developed in and around a club (details supplied); if it will work with the club in order to ensure that common sense prevails with regard to the development of new SAC areas surrounding the club; if it will take into consideration potentially swapping a larger piece of its land for the area of contention which it has raised with the service in January 2019 and which will ultimately lead to a potential net habitat gain for the SAC; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5277/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Culture)

The site referred to in the Deputy’s Question was proposed for designation as a special area of conservation in 1997. It was adopted by the European Commission as a site of community importance in 2004.

When lands are being proposed for inclusion within a special area of conservation, landowners are notified in writing of the proposed designation and are sent an information pack on the relevant site. Public notification of the proposed designation is also undertaken. The information pack explains the scientific reasons for the proposed designation, sets out the activities requiring my prior consent, as Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and includes information on how to appeal against the inclusion of land within the site proposed for designation.

The deadline for lodging an appeal against the inclusion of land within the site referred to in the Deputy’s Question, as proposed for designation in 1997, has passed. In addition, the land referred to in the Deputy’s Question contains habitat which is listed as a priority habitat type within Annex I of the EU Habitats Directive.