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Research to help deliver a low carbon, sustainable and healthy future

The EPA has announced awards totalling €12.2 million to fund new environmental research projects. The EPA environmental research programme is a Government of Ireland initiative, funded by the Department of Communications, Climate Action & Environment.

The new EPA research projects funded will address a wide range of topics, including:
    •    Implementation of the Climate National Mitigation Plan and Adaptation Framework;
    •    Implementation of the River Basin Management Plans;
    •    Implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals in Ireland;
    •    Antibiotic resistance;
    •    Plastics use;
    •    Natural capital accounting;
    •    Peatlands management;
    •    Habitats drone mapping.

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Fingal County Council invests €12m in housing stock over the past 12 months

Fingal County Council invested €12m maintaining its housing stock over the past 12 months and will continue to roll-out that important programme over the course of 2019.

Window replacement, electrical upgrades, painting and plumbing are some of the measures that fall under this programme to ensure that local authority provides good quality accommodation to its tenants.

Director of Housing Margaret Geraghty said the maintenance and upgrade of stock will continue in 2019, and will include a stronger emphasis on how the housing stock can be improved from a Climate Change perspective. “Fingal County Council has always been very strong in terms keeping that stock up to date and making sure we provide good quality accommodation. We spent €12m in 2018 on our asset management, and what that really means is we spent money on painting our stock, replacing old windows with high energy rating solutions, as well as providing electrical and plumbing upgrades.’

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Major planning report launched by Ibec

Ibec, the group that represents Irish business, has published - Better Planning: reforms for sustainable development - as part of its ongoing Better Lives, Better Business campaign to make Ireland a better place to live and work.

Ibec Head of Infrastructure, Dr Neil Walker, said: “As the Irish economy enters the mature phase of its business cycle, it is imperative that we insulate ourselves from future economic shocks and address the serious capacity constraints emerging. Addressing inadequate infrastructure is a key concern for Irish business. Efforts to address such areas are being hindered by a planning regime that is unnecessarily costly and cumbersome.

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Minister Bruton calls on public sector to step up ambition at SEAI conference

Over 650 representatives from public bodies and government departments last week attended the annual Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) public sector conference at UCD to advance their energy efficiency.

This third national conference focused on driving the public sector beyond the Government’s energy efficiency target of 33% by 2020.

Opening the conference, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton TD said: “The public sector has made some significant improvements, but we need to do more. Since 2009, public sector bodies have avoided 3.6 million tonnes of CO2 emissions worth €1 billion in energy savings.

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Upper Liffey Valley Sewerage Scheme progressing to support current and future development in east Kildare

The upgraded wastewater plant will bring it in line with EU best practices.

Project will increase capacity of wastewater network and support population and economic growth

Irish Water is progressing the Upper Liffey Valley Sewerage Scheme which includes the installation of over 18km of new gravity sewers and rising mains, and the upgrade of wastewater pumping stations at Clane, Sallins and Monread.

A notice has been published to confirm the granting of a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) to acquire the necessary lands for permanent way leaves, permanent right of way and temporary working areas for the project.

Once the proposed project is complete it will increase the capacity of the wastewater network and support future population and economic growth in east Kildare. It will also reduce the risk of flooding or storm overflows for Naas, Kill, Johnstown, Sallins, Clane and Prosperous.

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