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Tag Archives: ACRES Burren Aran

Clare farm leaders have ‘robust’ exchange with minister

TALKS between Clare farmers and the Agriculture Minister have been described as “robust, full and frank,” as a delegation travelled to Dublin this week to fight for the Burren Programme and Hen Harrier Project.  Both schemes are at risk, as they are set to be subsumed into the new ACRES programme from the end of this year.  Michael Davoren, Aoife Forde, Dr Brendan Dunford and Councillor Joe Killeen made the case for retention of the award-winning scheme, that has made a multimillion Euro contribution to the sensitive environment of the Burren and to the local economy. Also addressing Minister Charlie McConalogue and Minister Pippa Hackett and their officials were Councillor Pat Hayes, Denis Tuohy and Ruairí Costello, who made the case for the retention of the Hen Harrier Project. A number of Clare’s Oireachtas members also attended. After the meeting, which lasted more than an hour, the ministers and officials undertook to come back to attendees, after giving consideration to …

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Agriculture Minister agrees to meet Burren farmers

THE agriculture minister is to meet farmers on two highly successful Clare environmental schemes, amid fears over the fall-out of their amalgamation into a new nationwide programme. Minister Charlie McConalogue informed party colleague Senator Timmy Dooley of his intention to meet farmers on the Burren Programme and the Hen Harrier Project next Tuesday (November 22). This follows a pledge last week by An Taoiseach Micheál Martin to take the matter up with Mr McConalogue. Senator Dooley, who met farmers on a visit to the Burren with MEP Billy Kelleher, said he was hopeful that fears over a drop in payments, could be allayed. “This is good news and an opportunity for farmers to make their concerns known directly to Minister McConalogue,” he said.  The Minister also gave that commitment in the Seanad last Tuesday to Senator Martin Conway, who raised the issue with him. The Fine Gael member highlighted the huge success of the Burren Programme in supporting environmental conservation …

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Taoiseach intervenes positively in Burren scheme controversy

TAOISEACH Micheál Martin has intervened in the controversy over the ending of a farming scheme designed to protect the world-famous ecosystem of the Burren. The matter was raised with by Deputy Michael McNamara who told him that farmers participating in the Burren Programme and on the Slieve Aughtys would lose out in the new ACRES scheme. In the Dáil, the Independent TD called on the Taoiseach to review plans to subsume the programme into ACRES Burren Aran.  “The new ACRES scheme will disadvantage the farmers in that [Burren] scheme as it were the farmers on the Slieve Aughtys who are in the Hen Harrier area. The standard they will have to reach is lower, but they’ll get less money.” Responding, the Taoiseach said farmers should not suffer a loss of income due to the new ACRES scheme. “I will take that up with the Minister of Agriculture, because we want more and more people engaged in environmental friendly farming. I …

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Anger at ‘unholy mess’ over Burren scheme

CHANGES to an award-winning scheme that has supported farmers to deliver million of euros worth of conservation measures in the Burren have been branded “an unholy mess”. The Burren Programme incentivises those farming one of the most sensitive landscapes in the country, with payments to promote sustainable agricultural management. Since its inception, the pioneering programme has supported more than 400 local farmers who have delivered at least €33 million worth of landscape and biodiversity improvements. Despite its internationally-recognised achievements, the programme will change radically as of January 1, 2023. From the start of next year, farmers will have to transfer to the Agri-Climate Rural Environment Scheme, ACRES Burren Aran, which covers a territory from the Aran Islands to Loughrea in East Galway. It is feared the move will lead to a drop in payments to farmers and decrease incentives for conservation measures.  Burren IFA member, Michael Davoren has sought an urgent meeting with Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue. “This is an unholy …

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