Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Ceisteanna (526)

Peter Burke

Ceist:

526. Deputy Peter Burke asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht her further plans regarding the repatriation of bogs in view of the €5 million promised in budget 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [48576/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Culture)

A key element of the National Raised Bog Special Areas of Conservation Management Plan 2017-2022, approved by the Government and published by my Department in December 2017, is to maintain active raised bog habitat and restore degraded raised bog habitat to active raised bog habitat.

The national restoration programme for Ireland’s raised bog special areas of conservation and natural heritage areas is contained within this Plan. It was intended to restore all designated raised bogs within 3 cycles, with the first cycle operating for the duration of the Management Plan.

This programme can now be accelerated due to the announcement in Budget 2020 of €5m for peatlands restoration. This funding will allow for restoration measures to be undertaken on approximately 1,800 hectares in 2020 on up to 9 raised bog designated sites across 7 counties and the installation of an Eddy Covariance Flux tower on a bog to measure surface to atmospheric fluxes (CO2, Methane, turbulent energy, moisture etc.). 23 other raised bog designated sites have been identified for restoration works over the next 5 years or so under the programme.