Construction Ireland Construction Directory
Time and date
Share this page
Construction News

Afforestation Targets Key Part Of Climate Action Bill

Construction News Image
Afforestation targets are a key part to delivering a successful Climate Action Bill, Labour Party Agricultural spokesperson Seán Sherlock has said.

Deputy Sherlock was speaking at the Committee Stage of the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Bill 2021, where an amendment on afforestation targets he proposed was ruled out of order by the Chair of the Committee as it was deemed it would place a charge on the Exchequer.

Deputy Sherlock said: "I put forward this amendment on the basis that we wished to support the government's attempts to ensure that there is a meaningful piece of legislation in relation to climate action and low carbon development but it was ruled out of order.

"I don't see how setting an annual target for afforestation and bog remediation, which I would consider to be relevant to the whole issue of climate action, could be injurious to a Bill of this nature.

"Forestry will play a key role in climate change mitigation, but the Minister did not seem open to taking on board good faith proposals from the opposition. The Bill by its very nature, in terms of what it seeks to do, will seek to impose a charge on the State in how we combat climate change.

-- Advertisement --

"The commitment to plant 8,000 hectares of new woodlands annually and to increase our forestry cover (currently below 11%) were widely welcomed and seen at the time as ambitious, but are now considered as modest by industry stakeholders, as 6,500 hectares were planted as recently as 2016.

"Sadly, instead of increasing on the 6,500 hectares, the actual planting of trees in this country has spiralled into decline in recent years with only 2,400 hectares planted in 2020, and less expected in 2021. It s a clear reason why we need targets committed to in law.

"Under the government's reasoning any amendment to the climate bill will impose a cost on the state, and with the decoupling of afforestation targets from the bill, we in the Labour Party find that to be extremely incompatible with the spirit of the legislation.

"If afforestation targets over the past 5 years had been built on a statutory footing and had to be achieved, an extra 15,365 hectares or 35 million trees would have been planted. These trees would have removed 5.8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere over their lifetime. If we are to take mitigation seriously, then targets of no value must now be a thing of the past, we cannot keep repeating this level of failure.

"Afforestation targets built on a statutory footing would ensure obstacles preventing delivery of these commitments would be identified and dealt with as priority, instead of just repeating the same failed methods each year as is currently the case."

"If we are serious about taking carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and releasing it as oxygen through tree planting then binding afforestation targets must be stitched into this legislation."

Latest Construction News


Centre Parcs has announced its plan for a major redevelopment of its Longford Forest. A planning application has been made for a proposed €80m-€85m development to include 200 additional lodges and four luxury treehouses. The proposed development will remain within the existing site boundary. The p

The government has committed to increasing the provision of public housing on public land, following months of campaigning by Green Party TDs. The Cabinet has agreed that in large urban areas, namely in Dublin and Cork, 100% of housing built by the Land Development Agency on public land will be soc

A total of 139 projects grants across 31 local authorities for a wide range of archaeological heritage projects have been approved by the Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform, Malcolm Noonan. First established in 2020, the Community Monuments Fund was increased from just over €1 mill

The Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) is planning to resume full vehicle testing services from 26 July, Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has announced. The DVA has carried out a review of its current vehicle testing processes in order to return to its normal 20 minute test slot for cars and lig

Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey today has visited Coalisland to view progress of the Public Realm works which are due to be completed in the coming weeks. The £4.275 million Coalisland Public Realm Scheme was approved by the Department in January 2019 and is providing funding of £3.72 million t

The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) have published the latest statistical bulletin on greenhouse gas emissions for Northern Ireland for the period 1990-2019. The statistical bulletin outlines key Northern Ireland figures from the Greenhouse Gas Inventories for Engla

Kingspan have announced a new five-year partnership with the Technological University Dublin (TU Dublin) and a donation of €500,000 to support the development of the University's innovative Design and Construct Centre. The Centre, located at Broombridge close to the University's Grangegorman Campu

Trade union SIPTU has supported a call for 100% compensation for homeowners affected by the mica homes scandal. A protest is being held in Dublin today, Tuesday, 15th June, by those impacted by the failure to adequately monitor compliance with construction standards. SIPTU Organiser, Kevin McKinne

Labour has called on the government to support their new Land Bill, which aims to decrease housing costs. The new Bill is due for debate in the Dáil on Wednesday and would tackle speculation and land hoarding based on the 1973 Kenny Report. The Land Bill will give the power to local authorities to

A total of 234 projects across 30 local authorities are to be supported with €13 million from the new 'Additional Outdoor Infrastructure Fund', Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan, has announced. Local authorities were invited to apply to the funding stream in late April for short term measures whic
Cuchulainn WorkwearHi-Tec ConstructionJK Home ImprovementsJOSEPH A. CLANCY LIMITED LIGHTNING PROTECTIONProject ADRBOLTSANDNUTS.IEZouch Converters LimitedWoodford Timber ProductsGMC Grab Hire LtdHoulihan Construction
Terms and Conditions