Speaking after the publication of the committee’s report at Dáil Éireann, Inland Fisheries Ireland(IFI) CEO Francis O’Donnell said: “Inland Fisheries Ireland, as a key State environmental agency, is a major stakeholder in protecting and restoring biodiversity in Ireland’s freshwater and coastal waters.
“I welcome the report and its recommendations, and was pleased to provide oral testimony to the committee.
“IFI’s objectives are reflected closely in the committee’s own recommendations. We want additional powers and resourcing for enforcement officers. And we seek enhanced cross-collaboration between relevant State agencies to better respond to both wildlife and fisheries crime, and pollution incidents.
“Our call for a review of sanctions and penalties associated with breaking environmental laws is also echoed in this report.
“Separately, with the support of the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, and the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications, Inland Fisheries Ireland has developed a National Barriers Mitigation programme.
“This initiative will remove, where possible, and mitigate the environmental impact of river barriers for fish species.
“IFI is committed to expanding our efforts to restore and protect our environment and enforce legislation where necessary, particularly where it can support the restoration of aquatic biodiversity.”