IFA will host an information meeting next Wed, May 10th at 8pm in the Tullamore Court Hotel on the proposed EU Nature Restoration Law and the potential implications for farmers and farmland.
Malcom Noonan, Minister for State for Heritage, will address the meeting online and representatives from both the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage and Department Agriculture, Food and the Marine will speak at the meeting.
The proposed Nature Restoration law is a key element of the EU Biodiversity Strategy. It sets out legally-binding restoration targets for a range of land and marine habitats and species, which together must cover at least 20% of the EU’s land and sea area by 2030, and all ecosystems in need of restoration, by 2050.
IFA President Tim Cullinan said that the proposed law could have far reaching consequences for Irish agriculture and is a serious concern to farmers and rural communities as some of the proposed measures will place substantial constraints on farming practices and reduce production.
He said the meeting is to inform farmers on the proposed regulation, what are the targets and obligations set out within the proposed regulation and what they could potentially mean for farmers that are impacted.
IFA Environment Chair Paul O’Brien said that the much of the focus to date has been proposed targets on restoring and rewetting drained peatlands under agriculture use, however there are more comprehensive restoration targets proposed encompassing habitats and species protected under the Habitats Directive.
Paul O’Brien said that lack of clarity on the potential impact of the proposed regulation on farmland and production is very worrying.
“It is vital that a full impact assessment is undertaken to quantify the area of farmland that will be affected to ensure the proposed targets are realistic and fair and are not detrimental to the continuation of farming,” he concluded.