Ecoplan Forestry specialise in Native Woodland Establishment and afforestation. We suit ‘species to site’ and will advise on how best to achieve your vision. Forest Service Afforestation grants are designed to generally cover all establishment costs, except in exceptional circumstances. Also, native woodland new plantings provide the highest level of premium available, and an annual premium is payable on planted land for a period of 15 years.
Ireland was left with very few native tree species following the last Ice Age and a drastically changing climate. Throughout history, Ireland suffered a near-total destruction of its woodlands primarily due to human activity and a deterioration of the climate: initial forest cover was close to around 80%, but it dropped until there was just 1% left..
Ireland today has one of the lowest forest cover percentages of any EU country – roughly 11% in stark contrast to the European average of well in excess of 40%. The ambitious, possibly unrealistic, Irish government policy is to bring the national forest cover to 18%. The vast majority of these new forests are exotic, commercial conifer species which make up about 71%.
Broadleaves are 29% of new planting, but that figure hides the fact that most broadleaves are planted as a biodiversity componenet of conifer plantations – usually in small groups, or along edges, which have relatively little benefit for the environment.
An Afforestation Licence is required for all new planting projects where the area involved is greater than 0.10 hectares (approximately 0.25 acres). Grant rates vary depending on the type of woodland planted, and this is generally linked to site type – drainage, elevation, and exposure in particular. Grants of up to €6,220 are available for the establishment (including fencing) and maintenance of plantations. However, any native woodland establishment receives a premium of €635 per hecatre per year, for 15 years.
Ecoplan Forestry will visit your proposed planting site, assess its suitability and eligibility, and provide you with a document explaining your options. There is no obligation to proceed with planting. Applications can be designed and tailored to suit most conditions or situations.
If you are unsure of your sites potential, if it is in a designated area (SAC, SPA, NHA, pNHA), or if it has been refused before, your best option is to get professional advice from the specialists in this area, and know for sure.
So for more information, and to be certain of your options, please go to the Contacts page.
If you already have an existing Native Woodland, it may be eligible for the Native Woodland Conservation Scheme. Please see our page for more information on Native Woodland Management
Ecoplan Forestry specialises in Native Woodlands – Native Woodland Management, Establishment, and Consultancy. For more information, please contact us.
See our Forest Management Services page for what else Ecoplan can do for you.
The Forestry Licence Viewer is an online tool that provides information on forestry licence applications. The Viewer allows the user to search by application reference number; select an application from the recent applications list; or, to simply zoom in on a site.
Submissions received on forestry licence applications will be uploaded to the viewer as they are received and processed. Documentation will be made available for applications received from 11th January, 2021, when they are opened for public consultation.
An additional tab will become available when a site is selected, where the user will be presented with the available documents, which can be opened to read. Further documents will appear when the application is decided, which is when the full suite of assessment and other documents become available.
You can use the Departments free Forestry Licence Viewer tool Here
You can read all about the Schemes small print on the Department of Agriculture / Forest Service Website