Dáil Éireann - Volume 602 - 19 May, 2005

Written Answers. - Farm Waste Management.

  124. Mr. G. Murphy asked the Minister for Agriculture and Food the position regarding farmers under 20 units for environment grants; and if a national scheme will be put in place (details supplied). [16780/05]

  Mary Coughlan: Consideration of further amendment of the farm waste management scheme, including the question of extending grant aid to farmers with less than 20 income units from farming, must await the finalisation of the ongoing consultations with the European Commission about the implementation in Ireland of the nitrates directive. The extension of funding to such farmers by means of a nationally funded scheme would require the approval of the European Commission by virtue of the EU provisions on state aids. I have previously stated that I intend to raise the cases of such farmers with the Commission in the light of the new circumstances arising from implementation of the nitrates directive.