Ireland announces forestry schemes

The Irish government has announced details of a new set of forestry schemes aimed at improving and growing Ireland's woodland areas.

The package, including a Forest Road Scheme, Reconstitution of Woodlands Scheme, Shaping of Broadleaves Scheme, Woodland Improvement Scheme and High Pruning of Conifers Scheme, was announced by Ms Mary Wallace, minister of state for agriculture, fisheries and food.

The various schemes, which are aimed particularly at the management of existing forests, are part of the 2007-2013 Afforestation Programme, and will be funded by the exchequer.

Speaking about the new schemes, Ms Wallace explained that sustaining the country’s woodland areas was important for a number of economic, environmental and social reasons.

“The government’s national climate change strategy sets out a clear role for forestry in mitigating climate change, not only in terms of carbon sequestration, but also in the role that the forest estate will play in providing renewable wood energy,” she added.

According to a recent report from the government, forestry is becoming an increasingly important aspect of Irish economic, energy and environmental policies.

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