The IFA has called on Minister O’Donovan to act to avoid flooding in the Shannon Callows.
Farmers want the OPW to manage the water levels on the River Shannon by dropping the water levels while ensuring that it does NOT cause problems further downstream.
That is according to IFA Connacht chairman, Pat Murphy, who led a delegation to some of the Shannon Callows this week.
Shannon Callows flooding
He reported that farmers still have a “large amount” of silage and hay to harvest.
“There has been no opportunity to cut the crops since July 1st due to very wet weather conditions.
“The crops on the Shannon Callows make up a substantial portion of winter fodder and are extremely important for farmers. July is a key month for farmers in the Callows.”
He said the minister to take immediate control of the situation to avoid substantial crop losses over the coming days and weeks.
He said the minister needs to ensure the water levels are managed appropriately to reduce the risk of flooding. “This will allow farmers to save their valuable crops,” he said.
In the longer term, an agency must be established, which would include local farmers to manage the overall Shannon project to rectify the problems and maintain it thereafter.
“This must be established without delay and cannot be put on the long finger,” he concluded.
IFA forestry protest
Earlier this week, the farm group led a demonstration outside the Convention Centre in Dublin to highlight the crisis in the forest sector.
Farmers with forestry took action to highlight the need for emergency legislation to reform the licence system.
Cullinan stated that farmers are being denied the right to manage their forests.
He stated that there are nearly 6,000 forest licences (afforestation, road and felling licences) caught up in the backlog.
“Forest owners are watching the value of their timber crop decrease by over €10,000/ha if they cannot get a licence to thin.”
He said the current crisis is undermining confidence in forestry as a land-use option.