Farmers in Co. Leitrim, whose land was buried under peat silt and sludge following a devastating landslide more than two years ago, are to receive a compensation package totalling more than €500,000.
An estimated 55ha of agricultural land was impacted as a result of the landslide, following a period of heavy rain, close to the village of Drumkeeran in June 2020 .
More than 20 farmers and eight foresters who were affected by the landslide have had to campaign since it occurred for a compensation package.
The Minister of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, confirmed today (Tuesday, November 22) that affected farmers will be able to qualify for payments of up to a maximum of €20,000 each.
“Having visited the Drumkeeran area in November 2021, I witnessed the significant effect of the landslide on the locality,” Minister McConalogue said.
“It was incredibly tough on everyone in the area. This was a hugely traumatic event for farmers and households in the area.
“We have moved to support farmers and landowners who have found themselves in this awful situation through no fault of their own. We will continue to stand by the farmers affected.”
The minister said those impacted by the landslide will receive direct financial assistance.
Support will be provided to farmers for fencing and gateways on agricultural land affected by the landslide.
Funding is also being provided for the reconstitution of affected forest areas as part of the aid package.
The multi-agency working group that was set up to provide support to those impacted by the landslide has welcomed the compensation package.
Minister Malcolm Noonan who chaired the group said the landslide at Drumkeeran had been a “traumatic event for people locally”.
“It undermined livelihoods and caused serious and irreversible ecological damage,” he said.
“Lessons must be learned from such events and the reports we commissioned should inform all future land use proposals on sensitive soils and habitats.”
The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) will now write to farmers and landowners impacted by the landslide with details of the compensation scheme.
It has advised those affected to apply for the scheme before the closing date of November 30, 2022.
“This is to ensure that payments under the aid package can be made as quickly as possible,” DAFM stated.
Full article from: EU Commission approves CAP Strategic Plans from 3 countries – Agriland.ie