The proposed sale of Moyode wood by Coillte (See below) was discussed on Today with Pat Kenny.
The item was light in that it concentrated on the environmental concerns of locals. It was left to Fine Gael senator Fidelma Healy-Eames to touch on the real problem at the heart of the matter – The status and ultimate commercial aims of Coillte.
The senator suggested that the Oireachtas should look at Coillte’s remit of making profit out of forests. She mentioned the recent sale of 40 acres of woodland at Derrydonnel to the Quinn Group. According to the senator, nobody knew about this deal in advance. She suggested that perhaps Coillte was preparing for privatisation.
The original letter sent to residents was clear; the forest was being put up for sale. Since the item became a news story, Coillte has backed off and now claims that nothing has yet been decided.
I suspect that this was a deliberate strategy by Coillte; put out the idea of selling the woods and see how the public/media reacted.
I wonder if Pat Kenny asked Coillte to participate in this morning’s show? In any case, it’s a pity there wasn’t a more robust questioning of Coillte’s activities and strategies.
Perhaps RTEs excellent Investigative Unit might do a special on the matter.