Forestry group claims growth is being thwarted by regulations

The government is being urged to lift restrictions on the planting of private forests, with the Donegal Woodland Owners Society seeking an urgent meeting with the Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney.

Chairperson John Jackson says the level of afforestation in Donegal in recent years has crashed from over 6000 acres planted in 1995 to under 500 acres per year, but now, he claims, vast areas of land in Donegal, with proven high growth rates have been barred from afforestation on very dubious grounds.

John Jackson says jobs can be created by doubling Ireland's forestry cover, but the state must act now........