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Minister Doyle announces Department grant aid funding to NUIG for work on strength properties of Irish timber and on the potential for multi-rise timber building

Minister of State for Forestry Andrew Doyle TD today announced DAFM grant aid funding of €477,000 for a 3-year programme of work at the College of Engineering and Informatics, NUIG. The programme will support the structural use of Irish timber for added value, input to the development of European timber standards, and provide technical expertise to Irish regulatory bodies and industry in relation to timber buildings. Dr Annette Harte of NUIG, in collaboration with the Centre for Wood Science and Technology, Edinburgh Napier University, will lead the work.

In making the announcement Minister Doyle said “Changes in growth patterns in forests and harvesting practices can affect wood properties. It is essential that we have a forest resource that is fit for purpose and can continue to supply quality roundwood of our main species Sitka spruce for the manufacture of structural timber for home and export markets. This award and other project related funding from my Department is towards that end. We are also seeking to extend the use of other conifers such as Douglas fir and Norway spruce in the afforestation programme.

In welcoming the announcement Dr Harte said “Recent technological advancements coupled with the acceptance that wood products play a key role in addressing climate change and sustainable development have led to rapid growth in timber construction across the globe and this trend is expected to continue. Through the Wood Properties for Ireland programme, NUI Galway will work closely with the forest and wood processing sector to ensure that the structural properties of our wood products are well characterised and certified so that the Irish forest sector will benefit from these developments.”

Minister Doyle added “Recently published work by the European Forest Institute suggests that for each tonne of wood products used instead of non-wood products, there is an emissions reduction of approximately 2 tonnes of carbon dioxide. There other advantages to using wood construction including speed of build, ability to prefabricate walls and floors and crane into place. NUIG and Dr Harte and colleagues have taken a leading role in elaborating the opportunities that timber construction provides. Their work will be further supported by the funding I am announcing today.

Note to editors

For further information on the grant aid programme please contact Eugene Hendrick or Vincent Upton, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (eugene.hendrick@agriculture.ie) or (vincent.upton@agriculture.gov.ie).

To view this Press Release as a PDF: DAFMPR 87/2017 (pdf 369Kb) 

Added 16.05.17

Minister of State for Forestry Andrew Doyle TD today announced DAFM grant aid funding of €477,000 for a 3-year programme of work at the College of Engineering and Informatics, NUIG . Pictured with the Minister  is Prof. Pól Ó Dochartaigh, Registrar & Deputy President, NUI Galway Dr Annette Harte

 

 

Date Released: 16 May 2017

Distribution channels: Agriculture, Farming & Forestry