Afforesting and reafforesting sites with deep peat

Department: Agriculture, Food and the Marine

If the Minister will not accept the UN recommendation for countries to leave untouched all peat soils of 10cm depth rather than afforesting and reafforesting sites with peat depths of 30cm, 40cm, and even 50cm peat [Written Answer 26/04/2023 Question Number(s): 135 Question Reference(s): 19661/23], can he at least assure the Deputy that he will end afforestation or reafforestation on peat soils of a greater depth than 15cm, given that his Government itself has published as part of the EU Green Deal ‘Keeping Ireland Green: 12 Stories about the EU and Ireland’s Environment’ with an introduction by Minister Ryan in which it is stated in Section 9 ‘A climate change solution beneath our feet’ that ‘It is estimated that a 15cm thick layer of peat contains more carbon per hectare than a tropical forest.’

How to find details on a sample forest road in the DAFM Viewer (example used is CN87698)

go to Layers, and select Roads

Relevant docs are in pdf on LHS of page

Click on the Road you require details for

Summary data appears

25 documents available, each need to be opened and saved, as there is not way to Select / Download All

Appropriate Assessment Screening Report

This project comprises 471 hectares of forest road works. The predominant soil type underlining the project area is predominantly brown earths in nature. The slope is predominantly flat to moderate (<15%). The project area is crossed by / adjoins an aquatic zone(s). The vegetation type(s) within the project area comprise WD4.

Overall Conclusion: Screen Out: No likelihood of a significant effect on any European site, and Appropriate Assessment not required

Assessment to Determine EIA Requirement

EIA: On the basis of this examination should this application be subject to the EIA process? No

Site Details


In Combination Report

The potential for the proposed forest road project CN87698 to contribute to an in-combination impact on European sites was considered by the Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine (DAFM).

As detailed below, various online planning systems and datasets (including DAFM’s Forest Licence Viewer) were consulted on the 16/11/2021 in order to identify other plans and projects, focusing on the general vicinity of the project area in the River Sub-Basin King’s (Liffey)_010

Appropriate Assessment Determination

Ecology Report

Build on Top

Prescribed Body Appendix

AA Screening

Overall Conclusion: Screen AA Required – Appropriate Assessment is required in relation to one or more European sites

AA Report

Spec for roadworks

Forest road construction

Proposed road, type of construction

NPWS Response

An Taisce Response

All Replanting Orders (Section26 Forestry Act (2014)) served during 2022

AIE 23/232

Multyfarnham, Co. Westmeath, it was found that approx. 2.59ha of woodland area had been removed without an appropriate licence

The Milford Partnership.

Inspection found that 25.44Ha of forest clearfelled under licence GFL21113 had not been replanted


Clearfell licence (GFL17068) 1.38Ha area should have been replanted by Feb 2018

Dromoland Castle, Unlicenced clearfell of 3.55HA


Replanting Order 02.22 initially issued during 2022 but due to new landowners it was re-issued in February 2023, therefore DAFM FS attached a copy of the reissued Replanting Order as the relevant Replanting Order document.

There was no Replanting Order relating to reference 04.22. Unclear why

Glenaboy river harvesting pollution incident – felling licence CK15-FL0052 which resulted in a pollution incident in November 2022 (‘Coillte Farm Partnership’ arrangement)

AIE request 23 194

Re: Harvesting pollution incident for felling license, GFL CK15 FL0052.
Location: Gortnafira and Lyre townlands, Curraglass, Fermoy, County Cork

Coillte Silt and Sediment Mitigation Guideline

AIE Request 20230090

A copy of Coillte’s Silt and Sediment Mitigation Guideline compiled in response to the Major CAR at Corrahoash, Co. Cavan EMS_GUI_021_Silt & Sediment Mitigation Guidelines_20112022_FINAL

Information on all roll-out training provided by the Environment Team in conjunction with the Team Leads from Estates/Engineering, Establishment and Harvesting to Forest Operational Staff and Contractors in response to the Major CAR at Corrahoash, Co. Cava

Ministerial Consent – Project Pearl / FuturEnergy Ireland (Coillte / ESB Joint Venture)

AIE request 23 144

Request for access to information held by the Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine relating to the provision of, by email, a copy of the consent from DAFM to Coillte in relation to Project Pearl i.e the establishment of FuturEnergy Ireland, as noted in the Briefing for Minister Hackett for the meeting with Coillte on 13 January 2022


M/20/005 – ESB/COILLTE (JV)

Following implementation of the Proposed Transaction, Coillte will continue to supply land to third party developers of onshore wind farms in the State

Coillte’s current share in this potential market is minimal (approximately [0-5]%), resulting from a […]% shareholding in a single wind farm located in Sliabh Bawn, Co. Roscommon

Coillte estimates that it has the largest share of Theoretically Suitable Land in the State (approximately [25-30]%). Coillte estimates that Bord na Móna holds the second largest share of Theoretically Suitable Land in the State (approximately [5-
10]%) with the remaining [65-70]% held by various individual landholders across the State

It sees our entire renewable energy business transfer into the new joint venture company, which aims to deliver 1GW of renewable energy projects by 2030.

Coillte’s portfolio of proposed wind farm projects and its Renewable Energy division has now transferred to FuturEnergy Ireland. The majority of projects in the pipeline are either preparing to enter the planning system or are in the planning process awaiting adjudication.

The new company is led by CEO Peter Lynch, former managing director of Coillte’s Renewable Energy Division.