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Minister Wallace announces appointment of new National Council for Forest Research and Development (COFORD)

Ms Mary Wallace T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food with responsibility for Forestry, today announced the appointment of a new Council for COFORD (National Council for Forest Research and Development), a State agency under the aegis of her Department.

Minister Wallace said that, since its establishment in 1993, COFORD has made a significant contribution to forestry research and development. She thanked the previous Council members for their contribution. She added that, with the beginning of a new Forestry programme, growing awareness of the role of forestry in climate change and renewable energy, and given the Government's commitment to forestry as evident from the recent roll-out of FEPS, now is a good time to appoint a new Council.

Following the appointment of Mr. Michael Lynn of Woodfab Timber Ltd. as Chairperson of the Council, the additional appointments to the Council are:

Pat Hennessy Irish Farmers Association

John Joe OBoyle Forest Service Northern Ireland

Michael Glennon Glennon Sawmills

Willie Fitzgerald Enterprise Ireland

John McCarthy None so Hardy Nurseries

Donal Whelan Irish Timber Growers Association

Tim Crowley Coillte Teoranta

Pierce Buckley Sustainable Energy Ireland

Nuala Ní Fhlatharta Teagasc

Diarmuid McAree Forest Service, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food

Dympna Furlong Forest Service, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food

Minister of State Wallace said "The forestry sector makes a substantial contribution to economic, social and environmental policy in Ireland. Given the level of infrastructural development envisaged under the National Development Plan, and the need to deal with issues such as climate change and meeting renewable energy targets, this contribution is set to substantially increase over the coming decade. Key to achieving these policy goals is the need for investment in research and development, to put in place a dynamic, competitive and environmentally sustainable forestry sector in Ireland. COFORD plays a significant role in forestry research and I am sure that its new members, drawn from the various elements within the sector, will continue and develop this role".

Date Released: 25 February 2008