Community Forests will be created, just like they are in the UK and other countries that are 10 years ahead of us in this area.
Why does Ireland need community forests?
Ireland needs Community Forests for many reasons. First, more and more people are worried about the right to access land. Especially those who may never have the chance to own land or interact with green spaces.
More and more people will talk about the idea of fuel security. With the cost of living going up and geopolitical unpredictability, we need to think about how and where we get our energy.
At the centre of everything we do are biodiversity, local food security, and better jobs.
What do we do?
We want to give the people who live near the forest a number of extra benefits, such as the construction of recreational facilities, the creation of more jobs, and the building of truly affordable housing.
This includes a place to process wood using regenerative methods, a place to process firewood and biochar, and a hydroelectric scheme. All of these things bring money into the forest.
Some other jobs can be found in the willow craft, jam, and wild food industries, as well as in micro-nursery spaces.
For people who want to start their own business, there are poly tunnels for rent and land for growing fruits and vegetables. Also, a community nursery to make sure that the seed bank will be healthy for future generations.
Planned for the forests are play areas, a classroom with low impact, a stage for performances, a heated poly tunnel, and workshops.
We'd love to hear what you have in mind and how you think this could work in your area. Will you have a big impact on how this might grow for Ireland?