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Local Biodiversity Action Fund Now Open

Local Biodiversity Action Fund Now Open

Date: 02 Feb 2022

On World Wetlands Day Minister Noonan Promotes New Campaign to Highlight the Importance of Key Ecosystems

February 2nd 2022 marks World Wetlands Day 2022, and Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform Malcolm Noonan T.D. is launching a promotional video to raise public awareness of the value of peatlands as key ecosystems, providing socio-economic and environmental benefits as well as being large, long-term carbon stores with unique biodiversity.

Since 2018, with increased funding and resources, the National Parks and Wildlife Service of the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage has restored or is actively restoring over 5,000 ha of protected raised bogs. This year will see the conclusion of the LIFE ‘Living Bog’ project which restored 12 raised bogs designated as Natura 2000 sites (SACs) in the Midlands region.

In addition to increased Government action and policy measures, community-led projects are a key component to the conservation and restoration of wetlands. The Minister said:

“On World Wetlands Day, I’d like to commend the great work being done in communities across the country at a local level to enhance our appreciation of wetlands. Since 2018, my Department’s Peatlands Community Engagement Scheme has provided funding to enable local groups to raise awareness, restore and bring communities together to celebrate our peatlands. This year’s scheme, launched in January 2022 has the largest funding allocation to date of €500,000.”

The Minister has also announced that his Department’s Local Biodiversity Action Fund is now open to applications from Local Authorities. The fund increased to €1.5m in 2022 and supports locally-led projects that align with actions under the National Biodiversity Action Plan. One such project funded under the scheme in 2021 is Galway County Council’s “Wetlands of North East Galway” StoryMap, also launching today.

Read more HERE.