DEAR EDITOR: In follow-up to my letter last week about the first meeting of the ash dieback taskforce, Limerick & Tipperary Woodland Owners (LTWO) is not compromised, as some of the others in the group are, and has not taken funding from the Department of Agriculture to promote schemes that are doomed to fail.

As such, we were in a position to refuse to sanction the terms of reference, having proposed that they needed to be amended to allow the exploration of all methods needed to make the recommendations work.

The taskforce chair, having ruled this out, gave us no other option but not to agree to the terms of reference.

But we did express the desire to stay with the process and challenge, where needed, and to propose better ways of doing things.

By not accepting the limitations as dictated by the Department of Agriculture, we will be able to promote what is needed and made it clear we shall continue to lobby all the present and potential Department’s political masters to amend this scheme.

Otherwise, it will fail as badly as each of the previous forest service attempts to deal with the effects of ash dieback have failed.

It must be highlighted that before the meeting took place, some of the participants were unaware of the level of exclusion that has been attached to the implementation plan.

The inequity in the proposed scheme was considered shocking and unacceptable.

The lack of urgency attached to the work of this group was demonstrated by the setting of the next meeting in September.

The members should be forgiven for this, as it was obvious to all that the task before this group is impossible to achieve under the circumstances they are being forced to operate in.

In recognition of the issues raised in the large protest against this plan outside Dáil Éireann the day after this initial taskforce meeting, LTWO Ltd was invited to present to the Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine on 12 June at 5.30pm on the subject and had accepted to do so.