Paying farmers up to €2,500/ha to sequester carbon in rewetted peatlands should be considered as part of a radical re-evaluation of national land-use policy, according to Fine Gael’s Richard Bruton.

The former minister for communications and climate change said Ireland’s ambitions of carbon neutrality by 2050 risked being derailed by emissions from clear-felled forests and drained wetlands, which he claimed could top 11m tonnes of carbon equivalent a year.