18th October

Learning about the environment through storytelling

An NUI Galway Ryan Institute project will see 20 children’s books, written and illustrated by this year’s sixth class students of Galway Educate Together National School, reach global audiences through the EcoScience Writers in Schools project.

EcoScience Writers

The cover of Dolphin’s First Day, designed by sixth-class students of Galway Educate Together National School

The goal of this unique project is to create a set of fun and informative teaching resources by supporting the students to write a story for their younger peers on an environmental subject of their choosing. The class wrote about creatures of the North Atlantic Ocean, incorporating facts into their fictional prose in a way that was both entertaining and educational.

Read more: Learning about the environment through storytelling

UNESCO 'biosphere status' for Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay has been awarded ‘biosphere designation’ by UNESCO in recognition of its unique ecological and cultural status. Designation had related to the North Bull Island only but is now extended to an area of approximately 300km2. Biospheres are recognised for their biological diversity and are managed to promote a balanced relationship between people and nature.

The award coincided with the launch of the Dublin Bay Biosphere Partnership, established by Dublin City Council; Dublin Port Company; Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council; Fingal County Council and The Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to protect and promote the Bay.Dublin Bay UNESCO recognition

Speaking at the launch, Dublin’s outgoing Lord Mayor Christy Burke said Dublin Bay was a unique and valuable resource.

Read more: UNESCO 'biosphere status' for Dublin Bay

Sorbets made with Irish rain water

Kieran and Sean Murphy of Murphy's Ice Cream love Irish rain. Not just any Irish rain but the stuff that falls in Dingle, Co Kerry, which they've collected and distilled to create 'Rainbow Sorbets' in two flavours - chocolate and raspberry. 

Crowned the 'emperors of ice cream' by food writers, John and Sally McKenna, Kieran and Sean explain they wanted to harness something "completely Irish, to tantalise the tastebuds".Murphy's Ice Cream

Murphy's sorbet range made with distilled Irish rain water

"Water is a key ingredient and we have the cleanest, purest water possible. Now Irish people and visitors alike can enjoy Irish weather in a whole new way!" 

Read more: Sorbets made with Irish rain water

Ireland criticised for insufficient climate policy

Ireland is failing to address climate change and is likely to miss its EU 2020 target 'by a wide margin' according to the European Commission's Country Report Ireland 2015.

Reacting to the report, Ciara Kirrane, coordinator of the Stop Climate Chaos coalition of 28 civil society oganisations, says the fact that Ireland is "off track" is not news to anyone observing our climate performance.

globe

"But the criticisms should be a wake-up call to Minister Kelly and the government," she said.

Read more: Ireland criticised for insufficient climate policy

Is Freedom of Information really what it says it is?

Inshore Ireland masthead

In our December issue we chronicled IFA Aquaculture’s efforts through Freedom of Information (2009 and 2013)) and Public Access to Environmental Information (2013) to procure the full and final report of the SUMBAWS Project which was published in 2005.

The representative body of Ireland’s aquaculture sector had sought this scientific report because parts of it were quoted in a formal Complaint to the EU Commission in February 2009 by the environmental group Salmon Watch Ireland on the potential impact of sea lice on wild salmon stocks in Ireland.

Read more: Is Freedom of Information really what it says it is?

Eighty-three rivers open for salmon angling in 2015

Joe McHugh T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, has approved a suite of regulations and bye-laws that will govern the wild salmon and sea trout fisheries in 2015. These came into effect on Thursday 1 January.

Maam River

 The Maam River - one of Lough Corrib's head streams                                                Photo Gillian Mills

“Fifty-five rivers will be fully open and will provide opportunities for all to share this important natural resource on a sustainable basis. A further 28 will be open for angling on a 'catch & release” basis', he said.

Read more: Eighty-three rivers open for salmon angling in 2015

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