The State expects to begin consulting stakeholders on the national restoration plan that the State must draft under the EU nature restoration law as soon as the law is finalised in the European Parliament, which is expected in February.
The plan is to set out which actions are to be implemented in specific areas to reach the legally-binding 2030, 2040 and 2050 targets in the nature restoration law, and it must be drafted within two years of the law passing.
Measures must be in place across all areas where there is an ecosystem in need of restoration by 2050 under the text agreed in trilogues, which concluded before Christmas.
Minister of State Malcolm Noonan stated that plans have already been made for the engagement elements of drafting the plan so that consultation can kick off as soon as possible, when he spoke to the Irish Farmers Journal last week.
The plan will not be drawn up in “isolation from farmers” and it will seek to deliver “attractive schemes that farmers will want to participate in”, Minister Noonan said.
“I have said this from the outset: when we embark on this two-year process, I want it to be as participative and inclusive as possible,” he commented.
“I want everyone to have their say in how we develop this plan and that the plan has the ownership of communities and people.
“I believe there is an appetite for this and I believe there is an appetite in rural Ireland for nature restoration, particularly if it is going to deliver tangible economic benefits to rural communities, which I think it will.”