The organisers of the RDS Irish Forest and Woodland Awards have announced that the deadline for entries has been extended. Participants now have until Friday, September 15, 2023, to submit their applications for the awards. The RDS Spring Awards event aims to recognize and celebrate the diverse range of forestry practices in Ireland, from small public amenities to larger commercial operations.
This year’s competition focuses on promoting the economic, environmental, and social benefits of good forestry and farming. With a prize fund of €12,000, the awards are divided into four main categories. These categories aim to acknowledge and reward farmers and woodland owners who have implemented climate-smart agricultural practices on their properties.
In partnership with the Woodlands of Ireland, the 2023/24 edition of the awards has introduced a new category specifically dedicated to native woodland conservation. This addition highlights the importance of preserving and protecting Ireland’s natural woodlands. Furthermore, the production forestry category is open to farmers and landowners who demonstrate sound silvicultural management on their farms.
The Teagasc farm forestry award is designed to recognize working farmers who successfully integrate forestry and farming practices to achieve environmental, social, and economic benefits. This category emphasizes the importance of sustainable land management and showcases the positive outcomes that can be achieved through the integration of forestry and farming.
The community woodland section aims to encourage and reward projects that involve the communal ownership and/or management of forests and woodlands. These projects should be established and managed in a sustainable manner that benefits the local economy and/or environment. This category recognizes the efforts of communities that actively engage in the preservation and enhancement of their natural surroundings.
The winners in each category will be awarded a cheque for €2,000 and an RDS trophy, representing their outstanding achievements in forestry and woodland management. Additionally, each runner-up will receive €1,000 and an RDS certificate of merit, acknowledging their contributions to the field.
The winners of the RDS Irish Forest and Woodland Awards will be announced at the 2024 RDS Spring Agriculture and Forestry Awards ceremony. This prestigious event will take place in the RDS Concert Hall next year, providing a platform to celebrate the accomplishments of individuals and communities dedicated to sustainable forestry practices in Ireland.
The extended deadline for entries offers an excellent opportunity for farmers, landowners, and community groups to showcase their innovative and successful approaches to forestry and woodland management. By participating in this competition, individuals and organizations have the chance to gain recognition for their efforts and contribute to the promotion of sustainable practices in the forestry sector.
The RDS Irish Forest and Woodland Awards play a vital role in raising awareness about the importance of responsible land management and the benefits it brings to the environment, economy, and local communities. By highlighting exemplary practices and rewarding outstanding achievements, these awards inspire others to adopt sustainable forestry practices and contribute to the preservation and enhancement of Ireland’s woodlands and forests.
With the deadline extension, potential applicants now have more time to prepare and submit their entries. This ensures that a wide range of projects and initiatives can be considered, reflecting the diverse landscape of forestry practices in Ireland. Whether it is the conservation of native woodlands, the integration of forestry and farming, or the establishment of community-owned forests, the RDS Irish Forest and Woodland Awards celebrate and reward those who are making a positive impact on Ireland’s forestry sector.
As the deadline approaches, individuals and organizations are encouraged to submit their applications and share their success stories in forestry and woodland management. The RDS Spring Awards provide a unique opportunity to showcase their achievements, gain recognition, and inspire others to follow suit. By participating in this competition, participants contribute to the ongoing development and improvement of sustainable forestry practices in Ireland, ensuring a brighter future for our woodlands and forests.