27th January 2020 | Policies, Press Releases

Supporting livelihoods, improving services, building community: the Green Party’s ten-year plan for rural Ireland


The Green Party launched its plan for developing rural Ireland over the next decade today.

Ireland will change dramatically over the next ten years. We have an opportunity to pull together and ensure that those changes are fair, sustainable and allow us to hold on to some of the best and most important aspects of rural Ireland: close and supportive communities, a love of the natural world, and a belief in our rural way of life.

Read the Green Rural Manifesto

Key Green Party proposals are:

  • Develop co-working innovation hubs in rural towns to allow people an effective way to work remotely in high tech industry. This will also help rural towns and villages to increase employment and footfall.
  • Expansion of rural transport bus links. Dramatically increase the communities serviced and improve connectedness with inter-city services.
  • Reform CAP funding to reward farmers for sequestering carbon, restoring biodiversity and producing clean energy. Promote organic production and use state agencies to develop more profitable routes to market.

Cllr Róisín Garvey, Green Party spokesperson on rural development, said:

“Key to what we want to do is breath life into rural Ireland. We are seeing the policies of other parties having a really terrible impact on people’s lives. It’s time for something different.”

“We need to see livelihoods in rural Ireland supported, we need to return work to our towns and villages and we need to improve the connectedness through rural transport.”

Sen Pippa Hackett, Green Party Agriculture spokesperson, said:

“We need to support farm families. Right now, the food system is designed for the benefit of big producers. This needs to change and we have the policies that will address this.”

“If we want to have farming families in twenty years then we need to put them on a sustainable footing now and that means changing the way we deliver food, in some cases what we produce, and making it pay.”

Speaking at the launch of the Green Party ‘Manifesto for Rural Ireland’, in Portlaoise today, Bláithín Gallagher, General Election Candidate for Sligo-Leitrim, said:

“As a result of failure by successive governments to act, rural Ireland in so many cases is in free fall. In response, this manifesto provides the core of a ten year plan to reverse this hollowing out of rural society. If elected I will ensure that it is delivered on too.”

“Rural communities are fundamental to our national identity. At the heart of these communities are our family farms. This is especially true in the North West.” She continued, “I support a shift away from an industry led model to one that puts farmers at the centre. The Green Party seeks a new way forward based on creative and productive conversations with farmers and the wider rural community.”