The IFA has lodged an objection to the proposed South Kerry Greenway with An Bord Pleanála.
The organisation says that Kerry County Council has failed to adhere to Government policy in line with greenway development and reneged on a commitment given to landowners that farmland would not be subject to a compulsory purchase order (CPO).
In August this year, Kerry County Council lodged a planning application for the 32km greenway, which included 197 CPOs.
Farmers impacted by this proposed greenway feel misled
“Recreational routes such as the proposed greenway in south Kerry have an important role to play in promoting agri-tourism and economic activity in rural areas,” IFA environment chair Thomas Cooney said.
“This is the firm position of IFA at national and local level. Therefore, it is with regret that Kerry County Council has forced IFA into a position where we have to object to this project, in order to restore the rights of the farmers affected.”
Cooney also stated that the IFA had written to Ministers Shane Ross and Brendan Griffin in the Department of Transport to call on them to ensure that the national strategy was respected by county councils.
Kerry IFA chair Pat O’Driscoll said: “Farmers impacted by this proposed greenway feel misled.
“When the project started, they were clearly told CPOs were off the table, yet the council ignored this commitment and is now seeking to use the offices of An Bord Pleanála to compulsorily carve up almost 50% of the farm holdings for a cycle track.
“This is not acceptable and it’s not in keeping with the Government’s policy for greenway development.”