UFU meets NIEA Chief Executive

Friday, 12 December, 2014

Representatives from the Ulster Farmers’ Union have met with NIEA Chief Executive Terry A’Hearn this week to discuss how NIEA operate with farmers and again highlight ongoing issues on the ground.

UFU Environment Policy Committee chair John McLenaghan, who attended the meeting along with UFU Senior Policy Officer Aileen Lawson, said: “This was a further meeting with the NIEA Chief Executive after months of work between the UFU and key staff at NIEA and I am pleased to say it was very positive. Over the past number of years, the Union has repeatedly made NIEA aware of difficulties on the ground with local farmers and recently provided NIEA with several key recommendations, which we believe if acted upon would improve the current situation for local farmers without having a detrimental impact on the environment.  We believe that these recommendations would also meet NIEA’s new operating principles announced by Minister Durkan in May. Discussions are on-going, and Mr A’Hearn has been receptive to our suggestions and will consider these with his staff. He has given us his assurance that he is committed to improving relationships between NIEA and farmers as well as delivering environmental outcomes.”

“We believe that improvements are possible and further meetings with NIEA are planned.  In the coming weeks we will be continuing to work with NIEA to discuss and progress our various recommendations.”