Thursday, 21 May 2020
Covid-19 (Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht): Statements
Josepha Madigan (Dublin Rathdown, Fine Gael)
On Covid-19 in general and turf cutting, the National Parks and Wildlife Service recognises the seasonal dependencies on the saving of turf and that it is an important source of heating fuel for households. Turf may be harvested from non-designated bogs in accordance with guidelines. No more than two persons should be on a bog at any one time. A rotation system could be agreed in advance by text or WhatsApp. Those cutting turf must do so and then leave the bog. Each individual must travel separately to the bog unless people are from the same household. Obviously, they cannot be over 70. They must bring identification or proof of ownership of the turf bank or have a turbary right.
I think Deputy Carthy mentioned public consultation. I have now reinstated public consultation, so I accept his point in that regard. The reconfiguration of any Department is a matter for the party leaders involved in the Government negotiations.