Biodiversity Action Plan 2016-2021

Foreword

The Biodiversity Action Plan 2016-2021 is an essential component of Bord na Móna's sustainability strategy which stands on the three pillars of people, profit and planet. This means whenever we are developing or delivering business solutions we ensure they are supported by all three sustainability pillars.

In practical terms, our strategy means making sure that, wherever possible, we do things that sustain a healthy natural environment. This includes driving down our carbon footprint, investing in renewables, developing environmentally friendly goods and services as well as rehabilitating bogs and enhancing biodiversity. This environmental aspect to sustainability, where we respect the planet we inhabit, has been an increasingly vital third element to our policy for many, many years.

In October 2015, we announced a significant change for Bord na Móna. To ensure we have a sustainable business means that between now and 2030 Bord na Móna will be in a process of profound transition. During this period we will be managing the move away from energy peat operations, into other businesses and land uses across the energy peat bogs that are part of our ca. 80,000 hectare acre landholding. This will involve the single largest change of use of land in modern Irish history. It will also mean a sizable reduction in our carbon footprint and a very substantial bog rehabilitation programme. We are confident that the investment and rehabilitation programme will collectively yield considerable environmental dividends for the people of Ireland.

Bord na Móna is an iconic State owned company so we are undertaking this transition in a way aimed at benefitting everyone in Ireland. We have also always been a ‘community company’ so it is important for us that our local communities and our employees will experience the tangible benefits of the new environmental goods and services that we are now developing. Delivering these benefits is a huge body of work. Indeed anyone familiar with the ecology of bogs, will understand that it will require patient work, significant investment and expertise to build this future over the period 2030 and beyond. I am confident that Bord na Móna possesses the skills, commitment and determination to achieve this ambition.

The bogs of Ireland hold a special place in the hearts and souls of Irish people. We in Bord na Móna recognise the privileged position we hold as stewards of state-owned bogs and peatlands. Our intimate appreciation of the complex value of the bogs means we understand the need to carefully plan to ensure positive, sustainable outcomes for our bogs. I am pleased that the Biodiversity Action Plan 2016-2021 developed by our Ecology Team, in consultation with a wide range of stakeholders, provides a very robust roadmap to this exciting new future for our bogs.

Mike Quinn
CEO Bord na Móna
March 2016