One has to wonder if the Minister of State Pippa Hackett and the forestry sector are talking to one another at all these days.
At last week’s Department of Agriculture climate conference in the Aviva Stadium, Minister Hackett maintained that her officials had “turned the corner” on forestry licensing and that the system was now “well oiled”.
Contrast that, however, with a recent statement from the Sustainable, Economic, Environmental, Forestry Association (SEEFA). It claimed that 436 applicants for 3,830ha were awaiting a decision on licences in August.
“Three months later it appears that only 53 of the valid licences equating to 516ha have been approved,” SEEFA claimed.
Now, far be from The Dealer to suggest that either of the parties are telling porkies, but as the Yanks might say: “there’s a disconnect here somewhere”.