Galway TD says proposed turf cutting ban is “unworkable”

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Galway East TD Seán Canney has said the ban on the sale of turf as proposed by Minister Eamon Ryan and the Government is ‘unworkable’.

The Independent TD said that hundred of thousands of homeowners rely on turf for heating their homes and that many householders purchase turf on the spread, save it themselves and bring it home.

He said there is no alternative in place to heat their homes, provide hot water and heating ranges for cooking meals.

“Many of these homes are Local Authority houses and the Local Authority will need at least a 20-year time frame to install alternative heating systems,” said Deputy Canney.

“I have many people living in towns and villages who have no alternative and cannot afford the cost of heat pumps which will cost in excess for €20,000 after the SEAI grant is paid.”

The Galway TD said he believes the Government is again bringing in a regulation which is ‘too blunt an instrument’ and leaves no time for alternative heating systems to be installed.

“If people cannot burn turf, they will have to source imported peat briquettes which we have stopped manufacturing in this country,” he said.

“We do not have the capacity to replace all solid fuel heating systems in the next 12 months and the supply of heat pumps are not there to match the numbers that will be required.

“This proposal is ill-conceived, not thought out and is causing severe stress to homeowners who fear that they will not have heat, hot water or cooking facilities if this regulation can proceed.

“I am calling on all like-minded TDs from all parties and non to unite in defence of these homeowners and confine this proposed regulation to the rubbish bin.”