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McEntee announces New Code of Practice for Farmers to Burn Vegetation Safely

Shane McEntee TD, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine with responsibility for forestry, today addressed a conference on Forest Fires in Ireland, organised by the Irish Forestry and Forest Products Association (IFFPA).

Minister McEntee noted the wide range of stakeholders represented at today's event and said that he was heartened by the level of co-operation between the agencies and bodies involved in dealing with the challenge of forest fires.  The Minister said that considerable progress had been made in implementing a series of recommendations made by the Land and Forest Fires Working Group intended to tackle the problem of illegal and uncontrolled burning.  He added that "it will take a concerted effort from all of the parties and stakeholders affected to be successful in dealing with the problem of forest fires".

The Minister also announced the publication of a set of guidelines intended to assist farmers who wished to burn vegetation safely and within the requirements of the law, as part of their land management regime.  The Minister stated "I am particularly pleased to have the opportunity today to announce the publication by my Department of a Prescribed Burning Code of Practice for Ireland.  This is one of the most important recommendations of the Working Group as it addresses one potential source of land fires and, as experience has shown us when such fires get out of control, they become the source of many forest fires."

The event was organised by the IFFPA to bring together the parties and stakeholders affected by forest fires and those engaged in prevention, emergency assistance and follow-up activities resulting from fire outbreak.

Date Released: 10 February 2012