A Corporate Plan has been introduced by Inland Fisheries Ireland, in what could be called an ambitious move. The plan will span from 2016 to 2020, and it aims to boost the angling sector.
The angling sector is already worth €836 million to the national economy, and reports say that the IFI is ‘utilising the latest technology to assist’ in the protection of valuable natural fisheries resources. According the IFI, there are four main goals of the plan:
The angling sector provides almost 11,000 jobs, so it’s no wonder the Inland Fisheries organisation wishes to protect it. There have been major leaps in technology use in recent years, with the IFI adopting several new methods of protecting freshwater resources. Spotting scopes, night sights, thermal imaging equipment, and even mobile phone apps are just some of the technologies listed by the IFI as helpful in conserving Irish rivers’ fish populations.
Fish habitats are now a major focus of IFI, more so than recent years. Habitats will be monitored by the National Strategy for Angling Development (NSAD). This programme, combined with the total Corporate Plan will hopefully increase the worth of the angling sector to €60 million, while supporting ‘an extra 1,400 Irish jobs’.
A statement from Ciaran Byrne, CEO of IFI, wishes to make it known that the organisation covers 74,000 kilometres of running water, 5,500 kilometres of coastline, and 128,000 hectares of lakes. He says that the IFI knows ‘that angling is at a turning point in this country’, and they know how important it is to ‘reinvigorate the sector’.
“This plan outlines how with the right budgetary and staff resources, we can maximise the potential of the resource while also ensuring that our environmental stewardship leaves the inland fisheries and sea angling sectors in a better position,” concluded Mr. Byrne.
It’s hoped that the optimism of the IFI is justified in the ambitious plan, which you can view in full here.