The Programme for Government commits to a land use review to ensure that optimal land use options inform all relevant government decisions.
In 2022 DAFM and DECC commenced a Land Use Evidence review.
Phase 1 of the review is being managed by EPA and will assemble the evidence base to determine the environmental, ecological and economic characteristics of land types across Ireland, as outlined in the 2021 Climate Action Plan.
The Land Use Evidence Review work is assisted by a Land Use Evidence Forum.
Meeting notes from 19 May 2022.
Presentation from Coillte
Focus areas are to create new forests, optimise management of estate to maximise carbon storage, redesign areas of peatland forests.
Want to increase the biodiversity in forests.
Identified forest areas that have high ecological potential.
Plan to transition sensitive Freshwater Pearl Mussel areas to semi natural woodlands.
Need help with soil indicators
A test run of converting the draft landcover data for the southeast of Ireland into land use data was done to assess the main barriers to creating land use map(s) for Ireland
How is urban land being assessed, as it results in multiple pressures? EPA replied that in the EAGLE land use scheme the relevant land uses are residential, infrastructure and services. This means that in the indicator assessment the urban pressures might be repeated as they are being catalogued according to the land use types (so urban pressures will be catalogued against residential, infrastructure etc)
There is a task to workshop/review the draft land use class definitions with the land evidence forum
Publication of meeting notes to EPA website. Meeting notes for this group have been requested under FOI and AIE. To make this more efficient for the requesters the EPA will publish meeting notes to the EPA website until the land use evidence review phase 1 is complete. Would like a one-week turnaround for any comments/corrections on the meeting notes for timely publication.
Meeting notes from 22 June 2022.
New map will be much higher resolution than Corine landcover data. Tests of the new map, for Co. Wicklow, shows the possible extent of the differences between the two datasets.
Existing use cases that have tested draft sample areas of the landcover data to confirm its applicability include:
• LULUCF (land use, land use change and forestry) reporting as part of EPA inventory and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions
• FLARES research project being undertaken by UCC
• DAFM Farm Environmental Survey pilot study
• EPA illegal waste activities risk map
OSi aiming for a September 2022 release of the data
September documentation will be light, and will focus on giving data users the information they need to use the data
Post September more comprehensive documents are planned:
o Documentation of the landcover classification
o Documentation of the methodology
o Documentation of the validation methods and results
OSi confirmed the landcover is part of the OSI established suite of products and they plan to maintain it into the future. OSI are considering what form the landcover product will take to meet user requirements.
Meeting notes from 7 September 2022
Plans for publication & communication of the Evidence Review documentation
All products will go on government of Ireland website and the launch of Phase 1 will introduce Phase 2