Green Light: Only 81 Afforestation Licences Granted out of 1,000 in 2024

"DAFM Issues 81 Afforestation Licences in 2022, Aiming for 1,000 by 2024"

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) has revealed that 81 afforestation licenses have been issued thus far in the current year, as per the latest forestry dashboard. It is projected that a total of 1,000 afforestation licenses will be granted by DAFM in 2024. Up to this point in the year, there have been 71 valid afforestation applications, with 20 of those being approved in the final week of February. The dashboard reports that 667 hectares have been planted so far this year.

On another note, the Native Tree Scheme (NTAS) has seen a relatively low uptake, with only 91 applications received since its inception in October 2023. In 2024, a total of 60 licenses have been issued under this scheme. Similarly, the Reconstitution Ash Dieback Scheme (RADS) has garnered 392 applications since its launch, with 187 applications submitted this year. The Social, Economic Environmental Forestry Association of Ireland (SEEFA) highlighted that for the first time, the weekly number of afforestation licenses issued meets the minimum target required to achieve the annual planting goal. However, SEEFA also expressed concerns regarding the ongoing backlog of licenses, emphasizing that the issue persists.

SEEFA further noted that the Department’s performance in the area of felling has been declining, with the current pace falling short of last year’s figures. This week, 16 Coillte felling licenses were issued, bringing the total for the year to 178, while 21 private licenses were also granted, totaling 188 for 2024. SEEFA emphasized the need for balance across all departments within the forestry sector, cautioning against improvements in one area at the expense of another. The organization stressed the importance of consistency to instill confidence among landowners in the forestry industry.

Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Pippa Hackett, is in the process of establishing a Forestry Strategy Consultative Committee (FSCC). The primary objective of the FSCC is to serve as a consultative body to provide input into the development of forestry strategy in Ireland. Comprising a diverse range of stakeholders nominated by Minister Hackett, the committee aims to represent various perspectives and make valuable contributions towards shaping the future of forestry in the country.

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons is the founder of Forestry & Carbon. Matt has over 25 years as a forestry consultant and is invoilved in numerous carbon credit offset projects.

Leave a Replay

Scroll to Top