I have stated again on national radio this week that the only organisation that have put down concrete proposals on the turf cutting issues are the TCCA (The Turf Cutters and Contractors Association) who have to date put down three separate documents on this issue. The people who are cutting turf on their own property have been working with nature for hundreds of years and they understand the need for preservation. The rules and regulations have been drawn up by desk clerk acedemics and scientists in Europe who don’t have a clue about the reality on the ground in rural Ireland. We will not tolerate it and we will not be walked upon but as we say there are ways to sort this out. I have great sympathy for the Gardaí who are patrolling the bogs in rural Ireland at the moment as they are only doing as they are told but surely this is a waste of Garda time. I also understand that the Air Corps are involved in patrolling too and there is even a suggestion that drones could be used. It is costing the exchequer a fortune. The problem is down to the habitats directive and we in the TCCA had a document that would have solved this whole situation in March of this year at a minimal expense of the taxpayer. I don’t want to see a situation where people are driven out of rural Ireland because of this issue that can be solved if everyone sits down and addresses it in a realistic way.
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