Biodiversity projects, such as the Ward River Valley and Broadmeadow Estuary conservation work, have received €5.8m from Fingal’s capital programme.
This allocation is the first phase of funding for a county-wide plan to halt biodiversity loss and restore nature in Fingal by 2030.
This plan contains 100 actions and is one of the most ambitious nature restoration programmes of any local authority.
This year €1m was spent on biodiversity actions in Fingal with works such as the removal of cherry laurel in the Ward River Valley and the construction of the fish pass on the Ward river in progress in Swords.
The text in the captial programme gives an insight into what is being funded in this first phase:
The key projects to be implemented over the next three years as prioritised by the Fingal Biodiversity Forum are the preparation and implementation of a management plan for the Rogerstown Estuary (action 1) and Malahide Estuary (action 5). The restoration of the winter bird roosting site at Caves Marsh (action 7). Pilot a biodiversity inclusive design for a social housing estate (35). ‘Biodiversity makeover’ of 3 housing estates (41). Wetland and river restoration project of the Bog of the Ring and Bracken River (43). Development of the St Ita’s local nature reserve (44). Development of SUDS demonstration sites in the Ward River Valley and Balbriggan (45). Installation of Osprey platforms (52). Wilding project Corballis Golf Club (53). Develop Newbridge Farm as a national hub for the promotion of Irish rare farm breeds (58) and
the development of a nature education centre at Turvey Nature Park (95).
Cllr Ian Carey said:
“This is very much a case of Fingal putting its money where its’ mouth is when it comes to nature loss.
“Up until last year only half of the money needed to halt biodiversity loss was secured but thanks to public outcry and public reps pushing hard for full delivery, we are now seeing a really strong allocation in the capital programme.
“I’m personally thrilled by this. I believe it to be the most ambitious nature restoration plan of any local authority in the country. From what I have seen nothing comes close. I advocated hard against the original ‘plan to fail’ approach and I’m really heartened to see these numbers in the capital programme.
“Yes there are lots of problems that still need to be dealt with to make good on our plans to restore nature. There are lots of impacts outside the control of the council but at least now, from a local authority perspective, we are seeing a clear commitment. I hope, in time, that other stakeholders whose work damages the environment meet this level of ambition.”