Wednesday, 4 December 2019
Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine
181. To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the actions being taken to work with industry stakeholders to increase the use of low carbon materials; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [50469/19]
Forests can make an important contribution to Ireland’s transition to a low carbon economy through the sequestration and storage of carbon dioxide.
My Department, through COFORD, launched its vision for moving the utilisation of timber up the value chain in its document entitled “Growing the Irish Forest Bioeconomy”. It has also funded research in this area. The Innovation in Irish Timber Usage project (IITU) investigated the potential for new add-value timber construction products such as Fibre-Reinforced Polymer (FRP) reinforced timber and Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT).
The Wood Properties for Ireland (WoodProps) Programme which is also funded by my Department, is a joint project between the Timber Engineering Research Group at NUI Galway and the Centre for Wood Science and Technology, Edinburgh Napier University. This project is focused on addressing issues related to characterisation of Irish-grown timber and associated work at National and European level in standardisation for structural timber quality and production – with a particular focus on grading.
In addition, my Department also provides funding to Wood Technology Ireland (WTI) which has been established to provide the Irish timber and construction industry with technical advice and information to facilitate compliance with the Construction Products Regulation and also with the requirements of the Irish building regulations.