Productive agricultural land should be banned from having solar panels on it, Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) rural development chair John Curran has said.

Speaking at an IFA meeting in Co Clare, Curran said in total within a 10-mile radius of his home in Co Meath, planning applications for solar panels were put in for “800 of the best acres in Ireland”.

“Solar panels should not be allowed on productive land. End of story. Once that land goes into solar panels, that’s it gone forever out of agriculture,” he said.


The mixed organic farmer added that forestry should not be planted on land that is suitable for producing food.

“It’s part and parcel the country has to do a bit of forestry. It’s a hot topic in certain parts. If the land is good for food production, it really shouldn’t be gone into trees,” he said.