Forestry Act 2014

Application for licence under section 7 to fell trees

17. (1) Subject to section 7 , where a person wishes to fell or otherwise remove any tree or trees, he or she shall apply to the Minister for a licence to do so.

(2) An application for a licence shall specify—

(a) the name and address of the applicant,

(b) the name and address of the owner of the lands (if different from the person referred to in paragraph (a)) upon which the tree or trees are located,

(c) particulars of the tree or trees concerned, and

(d) such other particulars as may be prescribed by the Minister.

(3) (a) The licence shall be valid for such period as the Minister decides, but shall not exceed 10 years;

(b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), the Minister may extend the duration of the licence for one or more further periods, not exceeding a total of 5 years;

(c) During the period of the licence the licence shall enure for the benefit of the land and any owner thereof.

(4) The Minister may at any time attach or vary conditions to any licence granted, including any or all of the following conditions:

(a) requiring the erection of notices in the area of tree felling advising the public that tree felling is being carried out in that area in accordance with the licence;

(b) requiring the replanting of trees—

(i) at such places,

(ii) of such species,

(iii) in such numbers,

(iv) of such surface area and density,

(v) within such period of time,

as may be specified;

(c) requiring, before and after replanting, effective protection in respect of the trees to be carried out and maintained, including fencing or barriers to prevent trespass by animals, during such period of time as may be specified;

(d) requiring the submission of a report to the Minister with such information as the Minister considers appropriate, including such particulars as are specified in section 13 (1);

(e) requiring the submission of a forest management plan to the Minister and, where such a plan has been approved, in whole or in part, by the Minister, to implement the plan as approved;

(f) such other environmental or silvicultural requirements as the Minister considers appropriate.

(5) In considering applications for a licence, the Minister may—

(a) consult any person whom he or she considers to be appropriate, and

(b) require the applicant to submit any maps or other documentation in such format (including electronic format) as he or she may require.

(6) A person who—

(a) fells or otherwise removes one or more trees, or

(b) causes or permits one or more trees to be felled or otherwise removed,

without a licence, or in contravention of a condition of a licence, shall be guilty of an offence and be liable—

(i) on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding €200 for every tree in respect of which the offence was committed (but which total penalty shall not exceed €5,000) or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or both, or

(ii) on conviction on indictment, to a fine not exceeding €1,000,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years or both.

(7) The Minister may require satisfactory evidence demonstrating that the applicant is—

(a) the owner of the lands where the trees are located, or

(b) acting with the consent of, and on behalf of, the owner.

(8) Where—

(a) a licence has been granted subject to conditions, and

(b) the applicant has appealed against one or more of the conditions,

no trees shall be felled or otherwise removed and, for the purposes of subsection (6), the licence shall be deemed not to have been granted, pending the final determination of all proceedings in respect of the conditions concerned.

(9) The Minister may make regulations governing the issuing of licences to fell, uproot or otherwise remove trees, and regulations made by the Minister under this section may—

(a) prescribe the format of any application for a licence,

(b) prescribe the placement of public notices on all sites where felling is taking place advising that the felling is properly licensed,

(c) provide for the publication of decisions made in respect of licence applications, and

(d) provide for any matters ancillary or incidental to matters in this section.