Environment, Biodiversity & Climate Change SPC Meeting – 3.00 p.m., Tuesday, 14th January, 2020

PPN Rep Report: Alan Walshe

Climate Adaptation Strategy to cut across all SPC’s. The presentation for the Climate Adaptation Strategy will be redesigned for each of the SPC’s to be made aware of the importance of Climate Change when making decisions for polices. Training related to the strategy will be rolled out to all CCCW staff.

The steering group will be made up of senior CCCW staff how will be leading the change to adapt the strategy to suit the needs of Waterford. Our strategy is part of the Mid-Eastern areas which head office is in Kildare. However, the CCCW believe we would best work with the Western Region has we are on the coastal and have many different issues related to Climate Change than the Midlands.

The steering group want to work with all stakeholder including the PPN when setting out it’s timelines and goals.

Next Steps for the Climate Adaptation Strategy is to development of a work programme and to engage with Third Level Institutions

Cllr. Hearne brought up the common agri policy in relation to removal of hedgerows next to cliffs including burning of Gorse. It was asked that the SPC write a letter to the department/Biodiversity Officer for a greater understanding and changing this policy.

Single Use Plastics Policy was welcomed by the SPC and will be going to next plenary. The Waste Charter will be added to CCCW event funding which will encourage useable containers at outdoor events.

PPN Items

Norovirus senior CCCW staff are aware of the issues around water quality however, Councilors were out aware of the effect on the Waterford and Dungravan estuaries and were happy that the PPN has brought this up. The SPC were informed that both the EPA and Marine Institute were carrying out survey into the issues in the estuaries. The senior CCCW staff feel that it is out of their control and it is an issue for Irish Water and believes that the increasing Dairy and Beef Herd has a lot to do with the decreasing water quality.

Outcome is that we are going to have both the EPA and Marine Institute reports presented at the next SPC meeting.

Wind Turbines off the Waterford Coast our PPN rep highlighted the PPN’s recommendation to the SPC. However, the senior CCCW staff felt that is an issue for the Planning and Housing SPC even though the wind turbines will have effect on environmental protected areas and biodiversity.

Light Pollution and Insects CCCW currently are looking into three options that will fit into different areas of the city and county. Now they have lights install along the ring road that are on dimmers and are only on full light during peck traffic times. There are looking into lower lighting for rural areas versus urban areas which will have dimmers on them. That the next or before the next SPC it would be worth following up on this.

Overall the tone was good and even Cllr. Hearne asked would it be possible to meet before the SPC on Thursday the 2nd of April.

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