The Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Shane McEntee TD, has announced the “temporary” suspension of grant aid towards new ash plantations under the Department’s afforestation schemes.
The suspension is expected to continue while the Department gathers more information with regard to surveillance results; the risk of the disease becoming more established in Ireland and the effects it may have on existing plantations.
The procedure follows in the aftermath of the discovery of Chalara fraxinea in Co Leitrim last October. As a direct result of the disease, 11 sites were destroyed by cutting and burning.
Legislation was subsequently introduced to ban the importation of plants from affected areas and since the initial discovery, 257 confirmed cases of the disease have since been reported across the country.