Families will not be prosecuted for the normal burning of turf under new environmental laws according to a local Minister.
Fine Gael Minister and Longford/Westmeath TD Peter Burke says that those burning turf domestically over the last ten years can continue the practice as the air quality legislation has not changed.
According the Minister, the regulations at the centre of last summer's turf ban controversy will focus only on the sale of turf online or in a retail setting.
Minister Burke claims that the majority of domestic turf burners source the fuel through local connections or word of mouth, and that the ban on social media and retail sales will not cause significant issues.
Speaking to the Joe Finnegan Show, he claimed that those reported for excessive or nuisance burning of any material including rubbish, will be assessed by their local council and fined if necessary.
I want no ambiguity around this, if you were burning turf 5 years ago, the same air pollution act applies to 5 years ago as it applies today.
It applies to all fuels not only turf, because if any fuel or substance is proven to be a nuisance on its impact and the local authority assess that to be the case, well then they can obviously prosecute under the the act.
But the regulations that I brought in are explicitly related to the sale and supply of turf on the internet or in retail.