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Brief Overview of Forestry Grant and Premium Rates

Establishment Grant Rates (€/ha)

Grant/Premium Category (GPC)1st Grant
2nd Grant
Additional Fencing Allocation (IS436)Alternative Fencing Allocation
(Non IS436)
Total Available Funding
GPC 1 - Unenclosed 1575 525 500 350 2600
GPC 2 - Sitka spruce / lodgepole pine 2310 735 500 350 3545
GPC 3 - 10% Diverse 2360 790 500 350 3650
GPC 4 - Diverse 2625 840 500 350 3965
GPC 5 - Broadleaves 3780 1155 500 450 5435
GPC 6 - Oak 3990 1260 500 450 5750
GPC 7 - Beech 3990 1260 500 450 5750
GPC 8 - Alder 2250 840 500 450 3860

Establishment Premium Rates (€/ha)

Grant/Premium Category (GPC)Annual premium (€/ha)Duration (years)
GPC 1 - Unenclosed 185 15
GPC 2 - Sitka spruce / lodgepole pine 440 15
GPC 3 - 10% Diverse 510 15
GPC 4 - Diverse 560 15
GPC 5 - Broadleaves 575 15
GPC 6 - Oak 615 15
GPC 7 - Beech 615 15
GPC 8 - Alder 575 15

Explanation of Grant and Premium Categories

Categories are determined by the category of land planted, the tree species and area planted.

GPC 1 – Unenclosed/Unimproved land:

Typically comprises of upland sites and marginal soils. The amount of unenclosed land in any application for financial approval cannot exceed 20% of the total area.

GPC 2 – Sitka Spruce/Lodgepole Pine:

Does not comply with scheme requirements in isolation and can only be approved as a component of a larger project comprising of other GPCs.

GPC 3 – 10% diverse mix:

Comprises of a mix of Sitka Spruce/Lodgepole pine together with at least 10% diverse conifer (approved conifer other than SS/LP). Broadleaves adjacent to roads and watercourses may also form part of this 10%.

GPC 4 – Diverse:

Acceptable conifer species, other than Sitka spruce and Lodgepole Pine

GPC 5 – Broadleaf:

Acceptable broadleaf species other than Oak and Beech

GPC 6 – Oak:

Pure oak, however nurse species may be planted where additional shelter is required

GPC 7 – Beech:

Pure beech, however nurse species may be planted where additional shelter is required

GPC 8 – Alder:

Pure Alder; up to 10% can be of other species for diversity

GPC 9 and GPC 10 – Native Woodland establishment:

This category supports the establishment of new native woodlands on ‘green field’ sites. Its focus is on native species, minimal site disturbance and long-term ‘close to nature’ management. It presents opportunities for planting in various environmentally sensitive areas e.g. NATURA sites. (Refer to Native Woodland Establishment Scheme Manual guidelines on native woodland types, species mixture and planting design)

GPC 11 – Agro-Forestry:

‘Silvopastoral agroforestry’, combination of forestry and pasture. Stocking rate of 400-1000 trees per ha; equally spaced with a minimum plot size of 0.5ha and tree to tree width of 20m. Acceptable species include oak, sycamore and cherry (other species considered). 80% of costs covered. Grazing by sheep or young domestic stock is permitted during spring and summer for the first 6-8 years. Trees must be protected and tree shelters checked regularly. Tree shelters can then be replaced with plastic mesh and larger stock can be introduced. Silage and hay production is also permitted.

GPC 12 (a&b) – Forestry for Fibre:

This scheme supports the growing of productive tree species to produce wood biomass yields in the region of 150-300 m3/ha over 10-15yrs. Eligible species are: Italian Alder, Hybrid Aspen, Eucalyptus and Poplar (preference to improved genetic material). Trees are planted at a minimum of 2000 plants per ha (A reduced grant rate applies for Aspen which is planted at 1,400 trees per ha). This scheme does not fund short rotation coppice, Christmas trees or fast growing trees (cut every 9 years).

Other Forestry Schemes:

Forest Road Scheme

A rate of €40/m to a maximum of 20m/ha is available where 50% or greater of the area is due for harvesting in the next 3 years (5 years for joint applications). Special construction works may be funded on environmentally sensitive sites up to max of €5000 per application or 50% of costs whichever is lower. Additional funding will be available where significant additional stone is required to build a bell mouth where it is at least 2 metres below the surface of the existing public road i.e. an additional equivalent length of 30m per entrance. Forest roads connecting to an existing forest road network in a public, state or private forest may be supported including portion of road outside property where there is agreement between owners. First instalment amounts to 90% of total grant while 20% of the forest must be thinned within 3 years of receiving the first instalment.

Woodland Improvement Scheme

€750/ha thinning and tending of broadleaves planted since 1980. A cost-based grant may be available for brashing operations to facilitate manual fertiliser application.

Reconstitution Scheme (Chalara)

Site clearance grant up to €1500/ha and replanting grants up to €5000/ha.

Reconstitution Scheme (Windblow)

Eligibility: conifer forests planted after 1 December 1989 and broadleaf forests planted after 1 December 1983. Maximum grant of €1700/ha up to a total of 10 hectares.

Relevant publications: