• Consideration of landscape in the framework documentation during the evolution of the Rural Environment Protection Scheme (REPS) in the Republic of Ireland.

      Whelan, Jackie; Fry, John; green, stuart; Teagasc Walsh Fellowship Programme (Teagasc, Oak Park, Carlow, Ireland, 2010)
      This paper looks at the changing concept of landscape during the evolution of REPS. It reviews and groups definitions of landscape and identifies their agri-environmental relevance. Descriptions were devised to amplify each grouping with reference to an Irish context and were used as an analytical framework to categorise each landscape reference in REPS documentation. There was an increase in the use of the term landscape with each version of the scheme and expansion in the range of different landscape categories to which this apparently applied. However there has been no coherence in its use. This paper makes recommendations to improve the framework for the treatment of landscape issues in REPS and its future evolution.
    • The Irish Rural Environmental Protection Scheme and lack of Strategic Environmental Assessment

      Whelan, Jackie; Fry, John (Teagasc, Oak Park, Carlow, Ireland, 2010)
      Proposals specifically aimed at delivering environmental benefits are often exempt from assessment, despite evidence that they can be poorly thought-through and sometimes counterproductive. This is doubly true of agri-environmental schemes where local farm-scale actions are expected to generate large-area cumulative effects on soil and water quality, biodiversity or landscape. There is evidence that the benefits of such schemes have often been assumed rather than planned for, thus necessitating ex-post assessment to justify their continuance.