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Tag Archives: Minister for Agriculture

TAMS payments on the way

The Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed has announced that his department is issuing payments to farmers under TAMS (the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme II) at an average rate of over €1 million per week this month. TAMS II payments to farmers will reach almost €5 million by the end of the month bringing the total amount paid to date under TAMS II to over €21.25 million. The Minister said, “I am delighted with the level of interest shown in the TAMS scheme and in these huge payment figures for August. We are on track to pay out an average of over €1m per week for this month. It reflects the significant on-farm investment underway in Ireland as farmers here continue to develop their enterprises. We will continue to make payments on a weekly basis. I would urge all farmers to proceed with their approved investments and to submit these for payment as soon as the works have been completed to …

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New Hen Harrier Scheme

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed has announced that work on the roll-out of the new locally-led Hen Harrier scheme will begin immediately. The minister confirmed his department has signed contracts with the Hen Harrier Project Ltd, representing a consortium of skilled and experienced conservationists, agricultural advisors and environmental scientists, to lead on the design and delivery of the new scheme. The winning team was selected on foot of a competitive tender operated by the department as offering the best approach for this critical new scheme which seeks to save one of Ireland’s most endangered birds. This will be monitored closely in this region, where the Hen Harrier has resulted in restrictions in farming practises for hill famers in parts East Clare and South Galway. Minister Creed said, “I am looking forward to seeing the new scheme in place as soon as possible. This scheme is targeted specifically at farmers with designated land and should provide farmers in …

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Lobbying TDs on Aughinish licence

A NEWLY-formed group has contacted two ministers and 31 Shannon Estuary TDs to register concerns about a dredging operation that began at Aughinish in County Limerick last Friday, which could impact the Clare side of the estuary. Aughinish Alumina Ltd was granted a foreshore licence to undertake 128,000 tonnes of maintenance dredging of industrial waste on the Shannon Estuary. The plan involves dredging 16,000 tonnes of material annually for a period of eight years. The company submitted a detailed Natura Impact Statement to the Department of the Environment, who made the decision to issue a foreshore licence. Rescue the River Shannon Group has written to the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Denis Naughten and the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed on the proposal. “We, as a group, are representing the farmers, fishermen and concerned residents of the Shannon Estuary area and we believe the department’s possible decision could have serious adverse effects on the …

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IFA demands flooding action plan

IFA Connacht regional chairman and Flooding Project Team chairman, Tom Turley has called for a meeting of the National Emergency Coordination Group to put in place an action plan to deal with the current severe flooding. Making a direct appeal to Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney and Minister for Public Works Simon Harris, he said, “Farmers across the country have endured a very difficult situation, particularly in western, north-western and midland counties. Already, IFA is reporting devastation to thousands of acres of farmland, households cut off, and animals having to be moved to higher ground. “The problem is particularly acute on the River Shannon where already Lough Allen has reached the peak water levels of the 2009 winter floods. In other areas such as Donegal, Mayo, Galway, Longford, Westmeath, Roscommon, Offaly, Clare and Limerick vast amounts of lands and households are flooded many of which have never experienced such devastation. “There is now a need for a clear Government response. While river …

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Clare farmers to share €7.8m

THE Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney has announced that almost €7.8 million will be issued to Clare farmers under a special scheme. The Department of Agriculture have started to issue €117 million in payments nationally and €7,797,885.91 here in Clare under the 2015 Areas of Natural Constraints Scheme. “These payments will provide a financial boost for the 3,564 farmers in Clare who have been approved to receive this payment. The Minister also confirmed that payments will continue to issue as individual farmers’ cases are confirmed eligible for payment,” Fine Gael TD Pat Breen said in welcoming the payments. “It is also expected that 70% of the Basic Payment Scheme will be paid from October 16, with balancing payments issuing from December 1. It is essential that we continue to support farmers in every way we can during the current challenging times. Fine Gael’s top priority is to secure the economic recovery. We have a clear plan …

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New measures to aid Clare farmers

A new package of measures has been announced by Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney to address difficulties in the dairy and pigmeat sectors. This is good news for Clare farmers, according to Fine Gael TD Pat Breen. “These measures are very welcome for Irish dairy and pigmeat farmers. Particularly positive is the decision made by the EU Commission to allow advance payments of 70% under the direct payments scheme and 85% for rural development schemes before completion of controls. These advance payments are expected to be made to farmers in Clare by mid-October and should significantly ease cash flow, he said. Deputy Breen said this package from the EU Commission is the result of hard work at a European level by the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney and reflects the majority of the demands presented by the Minister to the Commission in a six point plan. “The increase of more than 100% in the rate of private storage aid for …

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GLAS to include more commonage

The Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney has released further details of the first tranche of applications for GLAS, Ireland’s new agri-environment scheme, co-funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development. Minister Coveney welcomed the number of commonages that have come into GLAS – applications in respect of just under 2,700 commonages, or well over half of all commonages in the country, have been received. “This is a major step towards the establishment of greatly enhanced management regimes for these upland areas. Some 4,000 individual GLAS applications from commonage farmers were received, but the minister pointed out that another 5,000 commonage farmers are already in AEOS with time left to run on those agri-environment contracts. “These farmers are only likely to join GLAS when their AEOS contracts expire,” the minister said, adding that specific provision had been made to accept these farmers into the scheme in due course. This will be of particular interest to farmers in North and East …

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Compulsory microchipping of dogs

The compulsory microchipping of dogs will be rolled out on a phased basis, beginning with pups in September and expanded to all dogs in March 2016. The announcement by Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney has been welcomed by the ISPCA as an indication of the Government’s clear commitment to animal welfare. ISPCA CEO, Dr Andrew Kelly said, “The introduction of compulsory microchipping is a major step forward for dog welfare in Ireland and is a key component of responsible dog ownership. The permanent identification of a dog will increase the likelihood of it being returned to its owner if it is lost or stolen. Compulsory microchipping will also reduce the burden on animal welfare organisations and dog rescue organisations caused by stray dogs and should result in fewer dogs entering the local authority dog shelters around the country. “Don’t wait until 2016, get your dog microchipped now”.

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