While more traditional forestry has a rotation of approximately 35 to 40 years, the species planted under the Forestry for Fibre scheme have a rotation of up to 15 years, which equates to the number of annual premium payments for Forestry for Fibre – this means that a payment of €510 per hectare is payable each year up to the time the plantation is felled.
Summary of changes following adoption of midterm review proposals
Measure 1: Afforestation and creation of woodlands
Grant and premium increases
- 7% increase in all broadleaves and diverse conifer grant categories i.e. GPC4 to GPC 10
- 5% increase in all broadleaves and diverse conifer premium categories i.e. GPC 4 to GPC 10
- 2% increase in grant amount for GPC 1 to GPC 3
- 2% in premium rate for all plantations greater than 10 hectares
The minimum mandatory requirement per site is increased to 15% broadleaves.
GPC = Grant and Premium Category
Forest Fencing and Tree Shelter Scheme
- New deer fencing provision of €16.25/m, for IS436 @ 140 m/ha
- Upgrade deer fencing rates €8/m, for IS436 @ 140 m/ha
- A contribution of up to €300/ha for tree shelters aimed mainly, but not exclusively, at protecting broadleaves in the category “Additional Broadleaves, ADB”
- A contribution of €2.5/m up to a maximum of 140m per ha for forests that have been subject to hare damage after Form 2 payment and up to approval for Form 3 payment
Forestry for fibre
- Number of premiums increased from 10 to 15
- Premium rate per hectare increased to equal GPC3 (from €180 to €510)
- Grant per hectare increased to match that of GPC 3 (from €2,450 to €3,815)
- Premium rate per hectare increased to equal GPC6 (from €260 to €645)
- Grant per hectare increased to match that of GPC 3 (from €4,450 to €6,220)
- Eligible for grants under Woodland Improvement Scheme (WIS) for thinning, tending and pruning
All relevant GPC categories
- Additional Fencing: IS436 increased to maximum grant of €600 (140m/ha)
Measure 2: Neighbourwoods
- The scheme now open to applications throughout the year
- Increased coordination and promotion of this scheme
- Increased allocation will be made available to reflect the scale of works being undertaken within individual projects under this scheme
Measure 3: Forest Roads
- Road density increased from 20m/ha to 25m/ha
Measure 5: Woodland Improvement Scheme (WIS)
- The WIS scheme will now be opened up to non grant aided broadleaf forests and all broadleaved mixtures that meet the required eligibility criteria.
- Furthermore, all broadleaved forests, including mixtures will be eligible for 2 thinning grants of €500/ha.
Support for Continuous Cover Forestry (CCF)
This element of WIS is now open to conifer, mixed and broadleaf forests; successful applicants are eligible for three WIS payments (€750) for three separate interventions under the WIS scheme over a period of 12 years, once the work is in line with the approved transformation to CCF plan
Measure 6: Native Woodland Conservation
- Increased grant available under the Public High Forest category to match that of the Private High Forest.
- Access now allowed to forest fencing and tree shelter scheme.
- Fencing allowances available under the Afforestation Grant & Premium Scheme now also apply to Native Woodland Scheme (Conservation)
Measure 7: Knowledge Transfer and Information Actions
Introduction of a national scheme for Forestry Knowledge Transfer Groups (KTG) focusing on the mobilisation of timber and biomass
Measure 10: Forest Genetic Reproductive Material
- Seed Stand & Seed Orchard Scheme open for applications all year round.
- Seed Stand Element
- grant aid/ha increased to €750/ha (€600 first instalment and €150 for second instalment). Objectives changed to reflect lower expectations for Seed stands and 2-3 seed orchards each year for the remaining time of the programme.
- Additional fencing grant allowance. For areas susceptible to deer damage and where deemed appropriate by the Forest Service, additional support for deer fencing will be provided to protect the stand. This will be paid in accordance with the rates and densities per hectare as described in the revised Afforestation Scheme document. However, if additional deer fencing is required, this will be considered on a case by case basis.
- Applications for Douglas fir, Scots pine, Western red cedar, and western hemlock will be considered
Measure 11: Forest Management Plans
A new Forest Management Plan and Certification Scheme is proposed which will support certification of privately owned forests.