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Brief Overview of Forestry Grant and Premium Rates

Establishment Grant Rates (€/ha) 

Grant and Premium Category (GPC) First Grant(€/ha) Second Grant
(€/ha)
Fencing allocation (IS436)
140m/ha
Alternative fencing allocation (non-IS436)100m/ha Total Grant available
(€/ha)
GPC 1 – Unenclosed 1,605 535 600  350 2,740
GPC 2 – Sitka spruce / Lodgepole pine 2,330 775 600  350 3,705
GPC 3 – 10% Diverse Conifer
e.g. Sitka spruce and 10% broadleaves
2,410 805 600  350 3,815
GPC 4 – Diverse Conifer
e.g. Scots pine, Douglas Fir
2,785 925 600  350 4,310
GPC 5 – Broadleaf
e.g. sycamore
3,960 1,320 600  450 5,880
GPC 6 – Oak 4,215 1,405 600  450 6,220
GPC 7 – Beech 4,215 1,405 600  450 6,220
GPC 8 – Alder and Birch 2,695 900 600  450 4,195
GPC 9 – Native Woodland Establishment
(oak-birch-holly-hazel)
4,215 1,405 600  450 6,220
GPC 10 – Native Woodland Establishment
(alder-oak)
3,960 1,320 600  450 5,880
GPC 11 – Agroforestry 4,215 1,405 600  450 6,220
GPC 12 – Forestry for Fibre 2,410 805 600  450 3,815

Establishment Premium Rates (€/ha)

Grant and Premium Category (GPC)

Annual Premium Rate <10ha

(€/ha)

Annual Premium Rate >10ha

(€/ha)

Premium Duration

(years)

GPC 1 – Unenclosed 185 190 15
GPC 2 – Sitka spruce / Lodgepole pine 440 450 15
GPC 3 – 10% Diverse Conifer, e.g. Sitka spruce and 10% broadleaves 510 520 15
GPC 4 – Diverse Conifer, e.g. Scots pine, Douglas Fir 590 600 15
GPC 5 – Broadleaf, e.g. sycamore 605 620 15
GPC 6 – Oak 645 660 15
GPC 7 – Beech 645 660 15
GPC 8 – Alder and Birch 605 620 15
GPC 9 – Native Woodland Establishment (oak-birch-holly-hazel) 665 680 15
GPC 10 – Native Woodland Establishment (alder-oak) 665 680 15
GPC 11 – Agroforestry 645 660 5
GPC 12 – Forestry for Fibre 510 520 15

Eligibility - main points

  • Applicants must be over 18 years of age and hold a Personal Pubic Service Number (PPSN). Companies must provide their company registration number (CRO).
  • All afforestation projects must obtain prior written approval from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine termed ‘Technical Approval’. A separate ‘Financial Approval’ is also required for grant-aided projects before work commences.
  • Applicants for technical approval must be the owner, lease holder or joint manager of the land at the time of the application (exceptions where owner is deceased or owner consents in writing).
  • An application for technical approval under the Afforestation Scheme must be made by the applicant and a Registered Forester following a site visit and assessment by the Registered Forester.
  • Land must remain under forestry and therefore is subject to a replanting obligation for all grant categories outlined above.

Brief explanation of Grant and Premium Categories

Categories are determined by the category of land planted, tree species and area planted. Please note: the minimum mandatory broadleaf requirement per site is 15%.

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 Conifer/Broadleaf:

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 Conifer:

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/Birch:

Pure Alder or Improved Birch; 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 may present opportunities for planting in various environmentally sensitive areas.

GPC 11 – Agroforestry:

‘Silvopastoral agro-forestry’; a combination of forestry and pasture. Stocking rate of 400-1000 trees/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 is covered. Trees must be protected by tree shelters to allow for grazing by sheep or young domestic stock during spring and summer for the first 6-8 years. Tree shelters can then be replaced with plastic mesh and larger stock can be introduced. Silage and hay production is also permitted.

GPC 12 – Forestry for Fibre:

This scheme supports the growing of tree species to produce wood biomass yields in the region of 150-300 m3/ha over 10-15 years. Eligible species are: Italian Alder, Hybrid Aspen, Eucalyptus and Poplar (preference to improved genetic material). Trees are planted at a minimum of 2,000 plants/ha. This scheme does not fund short rotation coppice, Christmas trees or fast growing trees (cut every 9 years).

Relevant publications: