Greens Putting Farmers First on Greenways
The Green Party recently approved a motion from the Clare Greens which proposes to place the farming community at the centre of the decision making process in the future development of Greenway routes across Ireland.
Speaking today, Green Party Spokesperson on Agriculture, Pippa Hackett said “While we recognise that Greenways have proven to be very successful in welcoming visitors to our countryside, and offering employment and business opportunities in local communities, farmers and landowners can find themselves somewhat out of the loop when it comes to the planning of these public routes.
“This motion proposes that the process of seeking funding for greenways should require a consultation process with local representatives, landowners and interested bodies such as local IFA groups, as minimal requirement for applications.
“It also recommends that all developments are subject to the provision of supports for fencing, movements of livestock and machinery, a review of farm security around public access to greenways, and indemnification of landowners from liability and claims from the public usage of these routes.
In addition, any loss of grants or payments should also be compensated for, and provision for access to a knowledge transfer scheme on how to utilise Greenways as biodiversity corridors suitable for grant schemes.
“Greenways can be a key local amenity, bringing visitors and revenues into rural areas, and also an opportunity to improve biodiversity, and at the same time could allow farmers to optimise the use of targeted areas of land as funding streams.