Rural communities with populations of under 500 people are to be exempt from new laws banning the sale and distribution of turf.

After a clash with his Government colleagues on the issue, the Environment Minister has said that the ban due to come into force on September 1st will focus on commercial and retail activities.

In an interview with the Irish Independent Eamon Ryan says there has been major misinformation and disinformation that the state would 'arrest your granny for burning the wrong fuel'.

He added that inspectors will 'not be sent out to police the sale of turf'.

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