Cork North West TD Michael Creed has today warned that the EU Commission are about to intervene to ensure that farmers whose lands have been designated as Special Areas of Conservation for the protection of the Hen Harrier, are compensated for their loss of income due to the prohibition of farming activity in these areas. Commenting on the possible intervention of the EU in the matter Deputy Creed said:
“This issue has been long fingered for some time by successive Ministers who have failed to devise a suitable compensatory measure for farmers in Hen Harrier protected areas. I have been working closely with the Irish Farmers with Designated Land groups and individual farmers in my Constituency who have been working in a vacuum for some time on this issue.
“Sources in the EU Commission have now brought to my attention that the Commission is about to compel the State to finally act on this matter. It is regrettable our Government have not been able to act on this matter to this point and that the EU have had to intervene to ensure farmers are compensated.
“I am pleased that farmers whose land has been deemed unworkable because of the designation will finally receive compensation for their sacrifice to the conservation of the Hen Harrier. I would now call on the Government to be proactive and engage with the Commission and farmers positively to ensure a fair package for both the farmers and the taxpayer”