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Forestry for Fibre

Planting of trees for energy purposes (Grant and Premium Categories 12 a & b)

The objective of this measure is meet a forecasted supply-demand gap for fibre for energy and other wood product applications by growing multiple crop rotations on a 10 to 15 year cycle with wood biomass yields in the region of 150-300 m3/ha.

Tree species

Trees are planted at a minimum of 2,000 plants/ha for GPC 12a and 1,400 plants/ha for GPC 12b where aspen is planted. Stocking must be maintained at a minimum of 80% over the first five years of the period of premium payment. Planting should be carried out using pit planting where possible.

Minimum eligible area is 1 ha with a minimum width of 40 metres.

Eligible species are Italian Alder, Hybrid Aspen, Eucalyptus and Poplar with preference given to improved genetic material. The following species are eligible:

Species / genus    Species and clones
Italian Alder Alnus cordata
Hybrid Aspen Populus tremula x tremuloides (subject to plant availability)
Eucalyptus E. glaucescens, gunnii, nitens, rodwayi and subcrenulata.
E nitens only to be restricted to within 50 km of coast and frost-prone, low-lying areas also avoided.
Other species will be considered on application.
Poplar Clones 18 71058/2, Fritzi Pauley, Trichobel, V.471xV.24(65)/34, 72030/7, 76004/10 Raspalje 19 and Unal


Sites must be below 200 m elevation, be enclosed land, with free-draining arable or pasture soils, or surface water gleys without a peat layer.

Grant aid

The maximum grant and premium rates are detailed below. The afforestation grant is a fixed grant to cover the costs incurred in the establishment of a forest and paid exclusive of VAT. It is paid in two instalments as outlined below. An additional allowance for fencing (to the maximum rates detailed below) is payable with the First Grant instalment.

Once land is converted to Forestry for Fibre it will be classified as forest land and the provisions of forest legislation will apply. This scheme does not fund short rotation coppice or Christmas trees.

The grant application is made by the forest owner in association with a List of Registered Foresters (PDF). Valuable information on how to make a grant application, eligibility requirements, available options, etc. can be found here: How do I get work done?.

Grant Rates (€/ha)

Grant/Premium Category (GPC)1st Grant
2nd Grant
Additional Fencing Allocation (IS436)Alternative Fencing Allocation
(Non IS436)
Total Available Funding
GPC 12a – Forestry for Fibre 1460 490 500 450 2450
GPC 12b – Forestry for Fibre (Aspen) 1245 420 500 450 2165

Premium Rate (€/ha)

Grant/Premium Category (GPC)Annual premium (€/ha)Duration (years)
GPC 12 (a & b) – Forestry for Fibre 180 10