Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine

Nitrates Action Programme: Discussion (Resumed)

Mr. Jack Nolan:

There was a proposal for ammonia emissions that every outside tank would have to be covered. However, after submissions everyone including the expert group agreed that should not be done now. There will be a review of that. That is not going to happen.

On grant-aiding slurry storage, the Department under EU regulation - and it is EU taxpayers' money as well as the Irish Exchequer - can only grant-aid farmers that are already compliant. You cannot give grant aid to someone who is non-compliant. This is where industry could step in with low-cost finance or to use things like the MilkFlex loan. As I said here last day, if I have a more energy efficient house, I will get a lower mortgage than someone who has not. Therefore why can the banks here not offer something similar? The Department cannot give grant aid to someone who is not compliant.