Environment

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    Smoke and mirrors on Air

    Irish newspapers seem to agree that Airbnb is the scourge of Ireland’s residential rental market. It is deemed responsible for everything from gentrification to accelerated rent increases, to homelessness. But perhaps Airbnb is a symptom of our housing crisis and not its cause? To Airbnb or not Airbnb? Airbnb is the world’s biggest online property market […]

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    The silent clearance of North Kerry

    North Kerry has become the ‘renewable energy capital of Ireland’, by default rather than strategic design. This bountiful traditional farming landscape has been obliterated by an industrial landscape of wind turbines, situated in random pattern, at the behest of developers, and not the wider community. Of 411 turbines with full planning permission in Kerry, only 200 […]

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    Politics instead of vision

    Denis Naughten (45) was born in Drum, County Roscommon, site of the Meehambee Dolmen, a portal tomb estimated to be 5,500 years old, and educated at St Aloysius College, Athlone which closed last year, University College Dublin and University College Cork, where he did a PhD in Food Microbiology (impressively focused on extracellular polysaccharide – complex […]

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    Russell, O Laoire and the Whitestown scandal

    When hazardous hospital waste was found in an illegal landfill at Whitestown, Co Wicklow Irish institutions and agencies were shocked. This wasn’t the usual domestic dumper avoiding charges of €1100 a tonne or a local authority dumping old road materials. The average cost of disposing of medical waste in 1998 was €11,480 a tonne. Clearly someone […]

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    Wild geese

    In April An Bord Pleanála surprisingly granted permission to Crekav Trading for 104 houses and 432 apartments on playing fields east of St Paul’s College on Sybil Hill Road in Raheny, despite receiving more than 1,000 objections, and a recommendation for refusal from Dublin City Council. The site was originally part of the St Anne’s estate, […]

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    Drastic Plastic Profligacy

    For years, it was widely ignored, even as the evidence grew more and more overwhelming. Reports had been flooding in from some of the remotest places on Earth, from the middle of the Pacific Ocean to the North Pole. Researchers found its impact was hammering every ecosystem, disrupting natural processes and spreading havoc across the […]

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    Swimming against a plastic tide

    Along Ireland’s coastline, you’ll encounter long sandy stretches and wild seas crashing against craggy coastlines. Yet, if we care to look under the surface – literally – it’s clear our seas and coastal habitats are not quite as pristine as would appear. The global issue of plastic pollution has recently come to the fore, amplified by David […]

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    Wicklow Council reacts to housing crisis

    A fiercely fought decision by Wicklow County Council officials to buy and demolish an Edwardian house in central Bray for 45 car spaces raises questions about the power of local authorities. The house, inhabited until now, was torn down on 12-13 April. Residents suspect that spending at least€1.3m to buy and replace it constitutes an […]

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    Island of Tyreland

    Carndonagh is an area of outstanding natural beauty that nestles in the shadow of the Grinlieve Mountain, only eight kilometres from the designated Natura 2000 sites, Trawbreaga Bay Spa and the North Innishowen Coast. Safeguarded by the 1992 Habitats Directive both these ecological wonders are home to protected animal species and diverse wetlands. Outwardly this […]

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