Meath County Council launches Climate Action Strategy


Meath County Council launches Climate Action Strategy

Official Launch of Meath's Climate Action Strategy

Why Have We a Climate Action Strategy

The need to address climate change is becoming more urgent, the evidence of which is visible across the globe, with scientists predicting increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events such as Hurricane Dorian. Ireland, and indeed County Meath, is not immune from such events with most recent Storms Emma and Ophelia causing severe disruption across the country.

Local authorities and government sectors have obligations to prepare Adaption Plans by September 30th, which will set out actions to adapt to the consequences of climate change. Meath County Council were one of the first local authorities to commence this process and following the adoption of the strategy by elected members at the September council meeting the Climate Action Strategy was officially launched on Monday, September 16th. The Climate Action Strategy sets out over 150 actions and addresses both adaptation and mitigation, covering 8 thematic areas.


Climate Action Roadshows to visit each Municipal District

The launch will be closely followed by 6 Climate Action Roadshows, over a 3 week period, which will visit each Municipal District. The Roadshows will showcase local energy suppliers, electric vehicles, climate friendly and sustainable products and services and local climate champions. Our message is twofold; firstly ‘buy local’ is one of the best actions you can take to support climate action, as well as supporting local jobs and economy and secondly; every action counts, no matter how small, collectively we can make a big change. 

Meath County Council’s Climate Action Team will also be on hand to offer advice on climate friendly living and we will have some giveaways and prizes at each event, all we ask is that a quick survey is filled in and the person makes a climate action pledge. It should be noted that this will be the first and last time we will have ‘give-aways’ at climate action events, we have made every effort to source merchandise that is environmentally friendly but we are conscious we are contributing to the generation of more ‘stuff’ and while many people may use the items they could potentially end up in a bin (or the wrong bin). In future we will use the merchandising fund to support local climate and environmental groups and will ask the public to vote for their preferred group.

Biodiversity and Climate Emergency

Meath County Council also declared a Biodiversity and Climate Emergency; this was declared at the July Council.  In response to the emergency situation climate action training was promptly organised for Elected Members with Raoul Empey from Sustaineo. Raoul trained under Al Gore and the interactive training resulted in many ideas being generated on how climate change can be addressed at a local level. It is believed Meath are the first county to provide such training. One of the ideas that has been acted upon is the formation of a Climate Action Forum for Elected Members. 

The inaugural meeting took place in August with Cllr Gilroy elected as Chairperson, this forum will support the Climate Action Team’s work with citizen engagement and will no doubt generate many ideas to promote climate action at a grass roots level and will enhance the 2 way climate conversation between the local authority and citizens.

Our climate action journey has started and it will be a long journey with many challenges, however, each challenge brings opportunities, to make Meath a climate ready county which attracts growth and jobs and promotes healthy lifestyles for all, it provides opportunities for innovation and creative solutions to climate change problems.