Minister Hackett announces commencement of 2020 payments to Burren Programme farmers.  Minister also announces the results of an evaluation of Burren Programme.

The Minister of State in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Senator Pippa Hackett, today announced the commencement of payments to farmers under the Burren Programme. The Burren Programme is a national and European Union co-funded scheme under the 2014-2020 Rural Development Programme.

The Minister said,

“I am delighted to confirm that payments for the Burren Programme are now being made in respect of the 2020 scheme year, and are the first of several batches of payments that will be made, to participating farmers, before the end of 2020. I expect that approximately €750,000 – representing 85% of the total due – will be paid to these farmers, for facilitating and developing these habitats, before the end of the year.”

The Minister also took the opportunity to announce that an evaluation of the Burren Programme has recently been completed by AECOM Ltd., and has been published on her Department’s website. The evaluation assesses the environmental, economic and social impacts of the Burren Programme.

Commenting on the evaluation, Minister Hackett stated,

“AECOM Ltd found that the Burren Programme has been successful in encouraging sustainable grazing and feeding systems, and removing encroaching scrub on over 23,000 hectares, providing space for rare flowers, such as orchids and gentians, to flourish. AECOM Ltd estimates that the value of habitat and landscape improvements delivered amount to €32.8 million since 2010, and highlights that the Burren Programme is an efficient and effective model for delivering environmental improvements.”

Here is the full press release.