06 Oct 2022

Funding boost for Longford biodiversity projects

Funding boost for Longford biodiversity projects

Funding boost for Longford biodiversity projects

Five Longford biodiversity projects are to share a funding boost of €53,396.

Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform Malcolm Noonan TD, has announced over €1.4 million in funding for 128 community projects across all 31 local authorities to carry out biodiversity projects through the Local Biodiversity Action Fund (LBAF).

€24,000 is being allocated to Longford County Council towards Biodiversity Awareness. It is intended to support a series of directly engaged and community-engaged heritage awareness and education projects, in 2022 which are aimed at both adults and children. On foot of requests by community groups in the county in recent years, this is a small grant scheme to provide support to community and heritage groups in the county to undertake targeted biodiversity surveys, including tree surveys, pollinator surveys, and habitat surveys.

€21,250 is going towards The County Longford Hedgerow Project 2022. This is a two-strand initiative with regard to  historic hedgerows in County Longford. The first strand will review sites surveyed as part of the County Longford Hedgerow Survey 2006, and develop a new desktop survey compiling all subsequent datasets into a new database with GIS outputs, which will form the basis of further field surveys.

Funding is also going to three other Longford projects - Birds Swift Conservation €2,275; Birds Barn Owl €2,500 and IAS Quagga Mussel €3,371 (this is a collaboration between 9 local authorities on the invasive Quagga Mussel in the river Shannon).

Green Party representative in Longford Catherine Joseph (pictured) said she was delighted to see that many projects and communities around Longford are going to benefit from this funding. 

She added, "It is important to see the implementation of the National Biodiversity Action Plan (NBAP) in Longford – and that we cherish and protect our wildlife and habitats. This is not just good for the environment but also promotion of community participation and engagement."

Details of the Longford projects receiving funding;

Since it was launched in 2018, a total of almost €4m has been granted to local authorities through the LBAF to carry out projects in support of the National Biodiversity Action Plan 2017-2021 (NBAP).

“We know that communities are at the heart of biodiversity action and that’s why I’m so thrilled to see this fund continue to grow and increase its impact all across the country,” said Minister Noonan.

“This year, we’ve funded 128 projects across all 31 Local Authorities – this will have real, tangible impact for nature and it couldn’t come at a more crucial time. What’s more, the successful projects are all contributing to the implementation of the National Biodiversity Action Plan (NBAP) and helping to advance our shared vision for nature. The new NBAP is currently out for public consultation, so it’s a great opportunity for people to have their say and help shape the future for biodiversity in Ireland.”

Engagement with communities and local authorities is crucial to the implementation of the National Biodiversity Action Plan.

The LBAF scheme represents a commitment to support implementation of the Plan at community, county and regional level, and recognises the importance of the work carried out by local authorities through their biodiversity and heritage officers.

All 31 local authorities applied for and will receive funding this year, with a total of 128 projects approved, covering a range of biodiversity related activities, including invasive alien species control, dune restoration, wetland surveys and biodiversity awareness and training.

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