A Falcarragh based farmer has said that those responsible for the measures imposed in relation to Special Areas of Conservation (SPCs) and Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) are as damaging as the destruction that Oliver Cromwell did in the seventeenth century.
A member of Cumann Feirmeoirí Cnoic agus Natura na hÉireann, Seanie Ó Baoill from Ballyness, Falcarragh, said that every land owner in the country has a folio. He pointed out, however, the title deed does not stipulate that the land is, or will be, an area of special designation.
He said that people should be allowed to do what they like with their own land.
“The issue is that people from Meenlaragh to Falcarragh are getting designations put on their land with very little consultation,” He said.
He said that people are then invited to send a scientific report to the relevant authorities explaining why the land should be taken out.
“Now, can you imagine an elderly person recieves that letter, they more than likely won't send a report back and their land is subsequently designated,” he said.
Mr Ó Baoill hopes to return the matter to European level. He added that matters will worsen in the future. He said that while they are being asked to maintain their land in an environmentally friendly manner they are being restricted in how they manage that process.
He added that it will have repercussions for farmers and members of the community in relation to obtaining planning for building in the future.
He said that at present farmers are finding it difficult to make a livelihood and that further consultation is vital for the community.