Ireland has one of the lowest forest covers in Europe, at just 11%, so we are in dire need of more forests here. Within our forest landscapes, native Irish woodlands make up only a small minority for a number of reasons. Furthermore, many of our native Irish woodlands are in the hands of private landowners, making it difficult for local communities to use and enjoy them. Furthermore, Ireland continues to have high emissions per capita compared with our EU neighbours. In 2017, The Environmental Indicators Ireland report showed Ireland had double the emissions equivalent per capita than Sweden, highlighting the challenge of reaching carbon neutrality and the responsibility of all sectors to commit to reduced carbon emissions and mitigation strategies.
The carbon sequestration and accounting schemes mentioned above provide an exciting opportunity for businesses in Ireland to reduce their carbon footprint, enhance native Irish biodiversity and give back to local communities. By investing in the planting of native Irish trees, companies will be part of a permanent move to help offset Ireland’s CO2 emissions, to provide sanctuaries for Irish plants and animals and to show the Irish people that native amenity woodlands can be an important part of every locality.