Category Archives for "All News"

Mar 27

Seaspiracy and saying no to seafood

Seaspiracy and saying no to seafood I remember, over a decade ago, kick starting the Irish Wildlife Trust campaign to end overfishing which was, in turn, part of a wider campaign called OCEAN2012. This was in advance of the reform of the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) and I was trying to get my head […]

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Mar 26

Chapter 9: Bear Country

Chapter 9: Bear Country “Do you remember, one day down in the glen you found a poor little wolf in great agony and like to die, because a sharp thorn had pierced his side? And you gently extracted the thorn and gave him a drink, and went on your way leaving him in peace and […]

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Mar 19

Chapter 8: the Shannon Wilderness Park

Chapter 8: The Shannon Wilderness Park “On the chilly lakelet, in that pleasant gloaming, See the sad swans sailing: they shall have no rest: Never a voice to greet them save the bittern’s booming Where the ghostly swallows sway against the West” From The Children of Lir by Katharine Tynan (1898)   “We can truly […]

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Mar 15

Press Release: Irish Wildlife Trust finds that no permits for ‘controlled burning’ were issued in the North, East or South of Ireland in 2020, and only two in the West

Press Release 15th March 2021 Irish Wildlife Trust finds that no permits for ‘controlled burning’ were issued in the North, East or South of Ireland in 2020, and only two in the West The Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT) has received information from the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage from Freedom of Information that […]

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Mar 13

The senseless logic of burning land

The senseless logic of burning land Let’s say for a moment that I’m a farmer in the uplands and I want to clear land for my grazing animals. I’ve been told by all the farmer organisations that fire is a perfectly acceptable tool for the task and I may even have heard that it’s beneficial […]

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Mar 12

Chapter 7: Pearl Valleys Farmland

Chapter 7: Pearl Valleys Farmland And precious their tears as that rain from the sky Which turns into pearls as it falls in the sea Thomas Moore (Irish poet 1779-1852)   The water was slightly murky but as the swirling vortex slowed I could see the outlines emerge from the bottom of the tank. Even […]

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Mar 05

Chapter 6: the Ulster Shark Coast

Chapter 6: The Ulster Shark Coast Once upon a time there was a little boy who lived with his granny at Easkey. He always went down to feed the fish at the pier. He stole bread from his old grandmother for which she used to beat him, but still he did steal the bread and […]

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Feb 28

Our tortured relationship with trees

Our tortured relationship with trees If there’s one thing that unites nearly everyone in Ireland it’s that we’re all in agreement that the current attitude to trees is pitiful. Whether you’re an urbanite watching your street trees being torn down or a worker in a sawmill watching your supplies of timber dry up there is […]

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Feb 26

Chapter 5: Natural Capital

Natural Capital … as he waded slowly up its course, he wondered at the endless drift of seaweed. Emerald and black and russet and olive, it moved beneath the current, swaying and turning. The water of the rivulet was dark with endless drift and mirrored the high-drifting clouds. The clouds were drifting above him silently […]

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Feb 19

Episode 4: The Wild Atlantic Rainforest

Episode 4. The Wild Atlantic Rainforest   Glen of the scarlet-berried rowan Fruit praised by every flock of birds, For the badgers a sleepy seclusion Quiet in their burrows with their young 14th Century Irish poem   It is no more than a twig the size of a chopstick standing upright in the ground. Only […]

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Feb 18

Press Release: Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes Oireachtas report on pre-Legislative Scrutiny of General Scheme of the Marine Planning and Development Management (MPDM) Bill

Press Release 18th February 2021 Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes Oireachtas report on pre-Legislative Scrutiny of General Scheme of the Marine Planning and Development Management (MPDM) Bill The Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT) welcomes the report on the pre-legislative scrutiny of the MPDM Bill which will provide for development projects in the marine environment, particularly off-shore renewable […]

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Feb 16

Press Release: Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes independent review of the National Biodiversity Action Plan

Press Release 16th February Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes independent review of the National Biodiversity Action Plan The Irish Wildlife Trust today (16/2/21) welcomes the report of the National Biodiversity Forum which highlights serious weaknesses in the state’s approach to biodiversity protection. The IWT particularly welcomes the recommendation that the next National Biodiversity Action Plan be […]

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Feb 14

What Value Nature?

What value Nature? It has long been argued that one of the reasons for our biodiversity crisis is the failure of economics to account for environmental harm. The effects of habitat destruction or pollution from industrial effluent has been dismissed as an ‘externality’ as though the air we breath and the water we drink is […]

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Feb 12

Episode 3: Restoring Connections

  Shaping New Mountains Chapter 3: Restoring Connections   I am the wind which breathes upon the sea, I am the wave of the ocean, I am the murmur of the billows, I am the ox of the seven combats, I am the vulture upon the rocks, I am the beam of the sun, I […]

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Feb 05

Chapter 2: The Heart of the Matter

Shaping New Mountains: Chapter 2 The Heart of the Matter   “What is your trouble?” the gentle queen asked. “During a year”, Conn replied, “there has been neither corn nor milk in Ireland. The land is parched, the trees are withered, the birds do not sing in Ireland, and the bees do not make honey.” […]

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Feb 03

Press Release: Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes commencement of National Parks and Wildlife Service Review

Press Release 03rd February 2021 Press Release: Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes commencement of National Parks and Wildlife Service Review   The Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT) welcomes the announcement by Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Malcolm Noonan, that the review of the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has […]

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Jan 30

The War on Rivers

The War on Rivers “In recent years land drainage policy has received attention on two counts: the adequacy of the financial returns to investment of public funds in drainage has been questioned, and it has been alleged that adverse impacts on the environment also result therefrom”. It might have been written yesterday but these lines […]

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Jan 29

Chapter 1: The End

Part 1 Episode 1: In the End   The beauty of the world hath made me sad, This beauty that will pass; ‘The Wayfarer’ by Padraic Pearse Imagine if all the birds vanished from Ireland. Picture for a moment your daily routine, except with no bird song, no seagulls rummaging around the bins, no rooks […]

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Jan 26

Press Release: Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes publication of report on Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) but process must be accelerated

PRESS RELEASE 26 January 2021 Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes publication of report on Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) but process must be accelerated The report published today by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government will advise the government on how to expand Ireland’s network of MPAs. This report is a crucial step towards safeguarding […]

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Jan 24

Shaping New Mountains

Shaping New Mountains In 2017 I wrote a book called Whittled Away: Ireland’s Vanishing Nature. One of the reasons I wrote the book was because I didn’t feel that people realised the true extent of the damage that has been inflicted, and continues to be inflicted, to nature in our country. It painted a fairly […]

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Jan 10

Press Release: Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes Government commitment to ‘High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People’ at today’s One Planet Summit

PRESS RELEASE 11 January 2021 Irish Wildlife Trust welcomes Government commitment to ‘High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People’ at today’s One Planet Summit The One Planet Summit, which takes place today at the initiative of French president Emmanuel Macron and which will be attended (virtually) by Malcolm Noonan, Minister of State for Heritage and […]

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Jan 02

What to expect for 2021

What to expect for 2021 2020 had been billed as a ‘super year’ for climate and biodiversity issues and, in a way, it was, but not like anyone could have imagined. Major conferences on climate, oceans and a ‘new deal for nature’ were all postponed due to Covid-19. A major, but under-reported, report from July […]

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Dec 18

The Case for Beavers in Ireland

The Case for Beavers in Ireland I have been agog these last few years watching in envy as beavers have popped up across Britain. Having gone extinct in the 1600’s these famously industrious rodents are now back to work at Knapdale Forest in Scotland as well as ten sites in England in which they are […]

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Dec 05

What’s the point of industrial fishing?

What’s the point of industrial fishing? The prominence of Brexit in the media was eclipsed this year by the Covid-19 health emergency but it has re-emerged in recent weeks due to the failure of the EU and UK to negotiate a future trading agreement. One of the sticking points has been fishing, an area that […]

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Nov 21

Reform of the NPWS is urgent

Reform of the NPWS is urgent “We desperately need new thinking, new concepts, new contexts, new teaching methods, new curricula, better communication between all the participants in nature conservation. If we had a new and vitalised education programme, half the battle would already be won.” David Cabot, then a scientist for An Foras Forbhatha (and […]

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Nov 12

Press Release: New information shows that unlawful turf-cutting remains widespread on Special Areas of Conservation

Press Release 12th November 2020 New information shows that unlawful turf-cutting remains widespread on Special Areas of Conservation Data from the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (DCHG), and acquired by the Irish Wildlife Trust under Access to Information on the Environment rules, shows that mechanical turf-cutting continues to be a widespread issue on […]

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Nov 07

Rewilding the Park

Rewilding the Park There’s a corner of the Phoenix Park, Dublin’s largest open space, that hints at wildness. It’s different from the rest of the Park in that it’s less manicured, messy looking, with unmown meadows and patches of scrubby thorn bushes. Most people walk right past it but within its tangled undergrowth there are […]

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Oct 24

Corrosive power relations, not farmers, are killing the planet

Corrosive power relations, not farmers, are killing the planet Feeding the world while bringing food systems back within nature’s limits is the challenge of the century. But farmers are mostly low wage workers and worry that greater environmental expectations will mean a further squeeze on their income.  Is it possible for them to be green […]

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