Houses of the Oireachtas

All parliamentary debates are now being published on our new website. The publication of debates on this website will cease in December 2018.

Go to oireachtas.ie

 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 411-430
 Header Item Property Registration
 Header Item GLAS Payments
 Header Item GLAS Payments
 Header Item Agriculture Scheme Penalties
 Header Item Herd Data
 Header Item Forestry Data
 Header Item Agri-Environment Options Scheme Payments
 Header Item Areas of Natural Constraint Scheme Payments
 Header Item Areas of Natural Constraint Scheme Payments
 Header Item Beef Data and Genomics Programme
 Header Item EU State Aid Negotiations
 Header Item GLAS Payments
 Header Item Agriculture Scheme Payments
 Header Item Agriculture Scheme Payments
 Header Item Fish Farming
 Header Item Fish Farming
 Header Item Fish Farming
 Header Item Fishing Industry
 Header Item Fish Farming
 Header Item Fish Farming

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 960 No. 4

First Page Previous Page Page of 86 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 411-430

Property Registration

 411. Deputy Niamh Smyth Information on Niamh Smyth Zoom on Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed if he will review and provide an update on a matter (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43511/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed Officials in the Lands Branch of my Department are actively engaging with the Property Registration Authority regarding this matter. They will reply directly to the solicitor involved when the issue has been resolved..

GLAS Payments

 412. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed when a green low-carbon agri-environment scheme or GLAS balancing payment will issue to a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43524/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The person named was approved for GLAS 2 with a contract commencement date of 1 January 2016 and been paid the 85% advance payment for 2016.

  During the processing of the 15% 2016 balance payment an issue presented on the computerised crosscheck of Department databases. Department officials are actively working to resolve this issue with a view to releasing the outstanding payment as soon as possible.

GLAS Payments

 413. Deputy Eamon Scanlon Information on Eamon Scanlon Zoom on Eamon Scanlon asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the status of a GLAS 2016 payment for a person (details supplied) in County Leitrim; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43530/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The person named was approved into GLAS 1 with a contract commencement date of 1 October 2015.

  The applicant has received their 2015 GLAS payment in full. The 85% advance payment for 2016 has recently been paid. The claim will now move to validation checks for the processing of the remaining 15% 2016 balance payment.

Agriculture Scheme Penalties

 414. Deputy Tom Neville Information on Tom Neville Zoom on Tom Neville asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed if a decision has been made on a GLAS penalty appeal in respect of persons (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43557/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The persons named were approved for GLAS 1 with a contract commencement date of 1 October 2015 and were paid the First Instalment Payment for 2015.

  The applicants wrote to the Department to advise that they wished to withdraw from GLAS 1 and sought entry to GLAS 3. The Department processed this request along with a clawback of the 2015 payment in line with the terms and conditions of the Scheme.

  The Department has not received any appeal in relation to this case.

Herd Data

 415. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the number of beef suckler cows and dairy cows, respectively, based on latest data, in each of the years from 2010 to 2016 and to date in 2017, in tabular form. [43558/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The Irish beef and dairy herds make an enormous contribution to the value of Ireland’s agri-food industry. Since 2010, the value of Irish beef exports has increased from €1.57 billion to €2.38 billion, the value of dairy exports has increased from €2.27 billion to €3.82 billion. The growth in the value of exports has been realised despite the challenges the sectors have encountered, the most recent of which is of course the uncertainty arising from Brexit.

  The following table details the dairy and suckler herd numbers as extracted from the June Crops and Livestock survey from the Central Statistics Office.

Year Dairy Suckler
2010 1,071,000 1,158,000
2011 1,117,000 1,123,000
2012 1,141,000 1,147,000
2013 1,163,000 1,150,000
2014 1,226,000 1,129,000
2015 1,296,000 1,076,000
2016 1,398,000 1,104,000
2017 1,433,000 1,081,000

Forestry Data

 416. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the planting targets, in hectares per year on an annual basis in each of the years from 2010 to 2016 and to date in 2017, in tabular form; the number of hectares planted in each year; and the number of hectares planted out of each annual target set on a percentage basis.  [43559/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The National Development Plan 2007-2013 set out planting targets for the period 2007 - 2013 at 10,000 ha per annum. The figure for 2014 is based on the maximum planting level achievable within the budget provided that year, which was 7,000 ha. Targets for 2015 - 2020 are set out in the Forestry Programme 2014 - 2020. The following table lists these figures.

Year Target Planted (ha) % of target achieved
2010 10,000 8,314 83%
2011 10,000 6,653 67%
2012 10,000 6,652 67%
2013 10,000 6,252 63%
2014 7,000 6,156 88%
2015 6,000 6,293 105%
2016 6,660 6,500 98%
2017* 7,140 4,259 up to 6 October  

Agri-Environment Options Scheme Payments

 417. Deputy John McGuinness Information on John McGuinness Zoom on John McGuinness asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed if the overpayments made to a person (details supplied) under the agri-environment options scheme or AEOS scheme 2011 will be examined with a view to minimising the amount of overpayment calculated; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [43594/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The person named joined AEOS 2 on 16 May 2011 with actions of Species Rich Grassland and Traditional Stonewall Maintenance.

Following an inspection, which was carried out on 15 September 2015, the total eligible area found for Species Rich Grassland was 5.35 ha. The area claimed by the Scheme participant was 6.69 ha. The overclaim of 1.34 ha amounted to 25% of the eligible area found of 5.35 ha. Therefore, this resulted in a 100% penalty being applied and no payments for the Species Rich Grassland.

The Inspector issued a letter to the applicant on 11 January 2016 outlining the findings and the decision that penalties and a clawback of undue payments would be applied. The letter also offered the right of appeal to the Regional Inspector by 29 January 2016, if the Scheme participant so wished.

There is no evidence to indicate that an appeal was submitted to the Regional Inspector. This case has now been finalised with all outstanding overpayments and penalties having been recouped.

Areas of Natural Constraint Scheme Payments

 418. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the status of a farm payment for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43618/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed An application under the 2017 Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) Scheme was received in my Department from the person named on 17 April 2017.

Under the 2017 ANC Scheme, eligible applicants are required to have met a minimum stocking density of 0.15 livestock units per hectare for a retention period of seven consecutive months and to maintain an annual average of 0.15 livestock units per hectare calculated over the twelve months of the scheme year. Payment under the ANC scheme has not issued in this case as, at this stage, the person concerned has not satisfied the scheme’s minimum stocking density requirements.

An official from my Department has been in direct contact with the adviser of the person named to advise him of the outstanding issue. The requested documentation in relation to this issue has not been received in the Department to date. However, I understand that the documentation is now being forwarded and on receipt of this documentation the application will be further reviewed..

Areas of Natural Constraint Scheme Payments

 419. Deputy Pat Breen Information on Pat Breen Zoom on Pat Breen asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed when payment will issue to a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43621/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed An application under the 2017 Areas of Natural Constraints (ANC) Scheme was received from the person named on 27 April 2017. Processing of the application is now completed and payment will issue directly to the nominated bank account of the person named shortly.

Beef Data and Genomics Programme

 420. Deputy Robert Troy Information on Robert Troy Zoom on Robert Troy asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed if there will be an increase in funding of at least €25 million for the beef data and genomics programme, to bring it to €200 per animal (details supplied). [43670/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed I am very conscious of the importance of the suckler herd to the Irish economy and to the agri-food sector in particular.

I have been very active in highlighting the potentially very damaging impact of a Mercosur deal on the European and Irish beef sectors and in turn potential impact on the Irish suckler sector.

The Beef Data and Genomics Programme (BDGP) provides farmers with some €300 million of funding over the next six years. I will continue to support fully this programme through the lifetime of the current RDP.

Earlier this year I re-opened BDGP for beef suckler farmers who were not already part of the scheme. This scheme (BDGP II) provides for six years of payments to farmers for completion of actions which deliver accelerated genetic improvement in the Irish national herd and improvement of its environmental sustainability. Payment rates and actions for participants in BDGP II are the same as those in the original scheme, with the exception that the training and carbon navigator actions must be completed by 31st October 2017. I currently cannot give any commitments to increase payments under this scheme..

EU State Aid Negotiations

 421. Deputy Robert Troy Information on Robert Troy Zoom on Robert Troy asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed his plans to seek an increase in EU state aid and to decrease the limits beyond the existing €15,000 to allow greater scope for targeted support to farmers. [43671/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed I assume the deputy is referring to an increase (rather than a decrease) in EU state aid limits, beyond the existing €15,000.

  In March 2016, at the Agriculture Council of Ministers meetings, I requested an increase in the agriculture de minimis threshold limits from €15,000 to €20,000, as a direct response to the ongoing market difficulties being experienced by farmers. The European Commission indicated at the time, that it would need to conduct an impact assessment so as to ensure that any such increase would not cause any risk of distortion of competition and trade. Minister of State Doyle also raised the issue of state aids flexibility, against the background of Brexit, at the recent Council of Agriculture Ministers meeting in Luxembourg.

  The European Commission launched an impact assessment on agricultural de minimis aid in July of this year. As part of its assessment, the Commission is looking at a number of options including:

  - increasing the individual threshold limit of €15,000, ranging from €20,000 to €30,000; and

  - increasing the national threshold limit, currently 1% of the annual agricultural output, by anything up to 2%.

  The assessment will also examine whether the aid should be concentrated to just one or a few agricultural sectors; or, whether the aid should be spread evenly between all agricultural sectors. The baseline scenario is to maintain the ceilings currently fixed within Commission Regulation 1408/2013.

  The Commission has set a target adoption date of April 2018 and I look forward to seeing the outcome of its assessment in due course.

GLAS Payments

 422. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the reason a person (details supplied) has not received a GLAS payment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43672/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The person named was approved for GLAS 1 with a contract commencement date of 1st October 2015. All 2015 payments have been paid to the applicant.

  The 85% advance payment for 2016 has been processed and payment has issued to the person named.

  During the processing of the 2016 balance payment an issue presented on the computerised crosscheck of Department databases. Department officials are actively working to resolve this issue with a view to further processing the application for the payment as soon as possible.

Agriculture Scheme Payments

 423. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the reason a person (details supplied) has not received farm payments for 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43677/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed An application under the 2017 Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) and Areas of Natural Constraints (ANC) Scheme was received from the person named on 19 April 2017.

  Processing of the ANC application has been completed and payment has issued directly to the nominated bank account of the person named.

  Advance payments under the BPS have now commenced. The BPS application of the person named has been processed, and accordingly an advance payment has now issued.

  In all cases, applicants should allow up to 4-5 days for payments to be processed to the relevant bank account.

Agriculture Scheme Payments

 424. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the reason a person (details supplied) has not received farm payments; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43678/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed An application under the 2017 Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) and Areas of Natural Constraints (ANC) Scheme was received from the person named on 11 May 2017.

  Processing of the ANC application has been completed and payment has issued directly to the nominated bank account of the person named.

  Advance payments under the BPS have now commenced. The BPS application of the person named has been processed, and accordingly an advance payment has now issued.

  In all cases, applicants should allow up to 4-5 days for payments to be processed to the relevant bank account.

Fish Farming

 425. Deputy Mick Wallace Information on Mick Wallace Zoom on Mick Wallace asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed if he is satisfied with the number of salmon farm inspections conducted by his Department's marine engineers to date in 2017; the measures he is taking to eliminate or reduce farmed salmon escapes; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43679/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed My Department’s Marine Engineering Division carries out an inspection programme of salmon farms on an annual basis. It is expected that the programme for 2017 will be completed by the end of the year.

In April 2016, my Department introduced a Protocol for the Structural Design of Marine Finfish Farms. This Protocol will help to protect against the likelihood of structural failure and will assist in the prevention of salmon farm escapes.

Fish Farming

 426. Deputy Mick Wallace Information on Mick Wallace Zoom on Mick Wallace asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed his views on farmed salmon being caught in the rivers Delphi, Erriff, Kylemore-Dawros, Newport and Bunowen catchments since August 2017, during a time when salmon farm owners did not file reports of escapes from cages; if he will initiate an investigation into the matter; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43680/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed My Department has noted media reports of salmon being found in some rivers which may be from farmed stock. My Department has advised Inland Fisheries Ireland that where anglers or officers of Inland Fisheries Ireland suspect that they have collected salmon from farmed stock that the fish should be sent to the Marine Institute for analysis, with a view to determining whether they are actually from farmed stock.

If fish presented to the Marine Institute for analysis are determined to be from farmed stock my Department will, in the normal way, take appropriate action in the matter.

Fish Farming

 427. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the reason for the recent statement by Inland Fisheries Ireland that 65 farmed salmon have been caught in five rivers in counties Galway and Mayo, in view of the fact that no escapes have been reported, despite the conditions of all aquaculture licences requiring operators to report all escapes to his Department within 24 hours; and if he is satisfied that the regime of regulatory oversight ensures public confidence in the effectiveness of his Department’s protection of the environment (details supplied). [43714/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed My Department has noted media reports of salmon being found in some rivers which may be from farmed stock. My Department has advised Inland Fisheries Ireland that where anglers or officers of Inland Fisheries Ireland suspect that they have collected salmon from farmed stock that the fish should be sent to the Marine Institute for analysis, with a view to determining whether they are actually from farmed stock.

If fish presented to the Marine Institute for analysis are determined to be from farmed stock my Department will, in the normal way, take appropriate action in the matter.

Fishing Industry

 428. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed the overstocking reported in the 2015 and 2016 finfish inspection reports by the marine engineering division, by site and number of fish.  [43715/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed The specific information requested by the Deputy will require a detailed examination of my Department’s records and is therefore not readily available. The information sought will be forwarded to the Deputy within 2 weeks.

  The deferred reply under Standing Order 42A was forwarded to the Deputy.

Fish Farming

 429. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed if his Department will provide data when requested on fish farm stocking, losses, diseases and mortalities in numbers of fish and their weight, including responses to parliamentary questions, in view of the fact that the Commissioner for Environmental Information (details supplied) is not of the view that numerical information regarding fish should be withheld from the public on grounds of commercial sensitivity. [43716/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed My Department always responds to requests for information in as transparent a manner as possible consistent with the legislative restrictions applicable to information sought in individual cases including, but not limited to, environmental legislation, the Freedom of Information Act and legislation governing data protection.

Fish Farming

 430. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed further to Parliamentary Question No. 167 of 4 October 2017, if the percentage figures of losses he has provided refer to a percentage of the licensed capacity of the site or to the actual fish held. [43717/17]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed My Department has been advised by the Marine Institute that the reported mortalities are in respect of the actual stock held.


Last Updated: 19/02/2020 09:12:10 First Page Previous Page Page of 86 Next Page Last Page