A squirrel in Woodstock Gardens. Photo: Brendan Marnell
Malcolm Noonan T.D., Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform, has announced over €1.4 million in funding for Local Authorities to carry out biodiversity projects through the Local Biodiversity Action Fund (LBAF).
Almost €50,000 was announced for Kilkenny-based projects including €10,200 for Phase 1 of the Biodiversity & Pollinator Corridors which aims to identify existing and potential biodiversity and pollinator corridors in County Kilkenny. A further €6,300 was allocated to provide expert biodiversity and pollinator advice and support to the seven Barn Owl communities in Co. Kilkenny. It was also announced that €8755 was granted to implement the recommendations of the Kilkenny Swift Audit and Citizen Science Programme and €22,950 was announced to control invasive species at Silaire Wood and Woodstock Gardens & Estate, based on recommendations from the two Invasive Species Management Plans funded by NBAP in 2021.
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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