A new vision for Irish trees, woods and forests until 2050 has been launched by Minister of State for land use and biodiversity Pippa Hackett.

The vision, an outline of where the Irish forestry sector could go, calls for “the right trees in the right places for the right reasons with the right management”.

It says this will be supporting a “sustainable and thriving economy and society and a healthy environment”.

For farmers over the next 30 years, the vision says that forestry will a “compatible element of the farming enterprise”. It says that, currently, “forestry is providing a profitable diversification option for farmers”.


The one-page vision has come about as part of what the Department of Agriculture described as “Project Woodland’s extensive public consultation”.

The group was formed last year to examine potential reforms to Ireland’s forestry sector and to consider Ireland’s longer-term strategic direction for forestry.

Project Woodland is developing a new forest strategy to 2030, which will underpin a new forestry programme for the period 2023 to 2027.

This strategy is expected to be published in January 2023 and a draft will be made available for public consultation and feedback shortly, according to the Department.

Key solution

The ‘Shared National Vision for Trees, Woods and Forests in Ireland until 2050’ envisages that Ireland’s forests will be seen as a key solution to the climate, biodiversity, housing and health emergencies of the 2020s.

Commenting on the vision, Minister Hackett said: “My Department has carried out extensive consultation to find out what we as a nation want from our trees and this shared vision reflects the outcome of that consultation.

Forestry offers a "profitable diversification option for farmers”, according to the new vision. \Donal Magner

“It is a call to action and shows the urgency needed to plant the right trees in the right places. The vision underlines our commitment to sustainably manage our expanding forest estate and to increase the environmental, economic and social benefits of forests.”


To come up with the vision, Project Woodland undertook a public attitude towards forestry survey, an online survey, a study of the attitudes of rural communities, a citizens’ assembly style ‘deliberative dialogue’, a youth forum and a series of bilateral meetings with stakeholders.

“The results of the various consultations on forestry over the past year give a hugely valuable insight into what Irish people want from our forests, and we have found a significant degree of consensus in this regard.

"There is almost unanimous support to establish more forests, and this aligns with commitments in the programme for Government and the climate action plan to urgently expand the area of forests in Ireland,” Minister Hackett said.

The summary of all six consultations, as well as the full shared vision, are now available here.

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