Lainseálann Coveney Tionscnamh Scoileanna Glasa agus Bruscair Mhuirí An Taisce

Foilsithe an Luain, 21 Samh 2016
Minister Simon Coveney

Rinne an tUasal Simon Coveney, T.D., an tAire Tithíochta, Pleanála, Pobail agus Rialtais Áitiúil Modúl Mhuirthimpeallacht na Saoránachta Domhanda de chuid Chlár Scoileanna Glasa An Taisce a lainseáil go hoifigiúil inniu (21 Samhain 2016)

Agus é ag labhairt i mBun an Tábhairne, Co. Chorcaí, ag an lainseáil, rinne an tAire cur síos ar an modúl mar chlár ceannródaíoch agus dúirt sé go raibh sé ar “fhíorthús cadhnaíochta sa domhan” i gcomhthéacs oideachas muirthimpeallachta agus feasacht an phobail a spreagadh.

Dúirt an tAire “go bhfuil an-mhéid déanta ag na Scoileanna Glasa chun feasacht páistí ar an gcomhshaol a spreagadh agus buairt láidir ghníomhach a chothú iontu maidir lena gcomhshaol a chosaint.”

Ag tagairt d’fhadhb an bhruscair mhuirí, chuir sé síos air mar fhadhb dhianseasmach a théann i gcion ar gach réigiún sa domhan agus gur drochbhainistíocht dramhaíola ar talamh agus ar muir is cúis leis den chuid is mó. ‘Dá bhrí sin, is féidir linn ar fad páirt a ghlacadh chun an fhadhb a laghdú trí chaitheamh bruscair a chosc, earraí a d’fhéadfadh críochnú suas ar deireadh inár bhfarraigí agus ar ár gcóstaí seachas sin a laghdú, a athúsáid nó a athchúrsáil,’ a dúirt an tAire.

Tharraing an tAire aird ar chineál trasteorann na faidhbe chomh maith ag rá go bhfuil Éire ag obair go crua i gcomhar leis an AE agus le Stáit Atlantacha an Oirthuaiscirt, chun bearta le dul i ngleic leis an bhfadhb a fhorbairt.

Dúirt an tAire chomh maith go ndéanfaí fíor-rath chlár na Scoileanna Glasa a thomhas ní hamháin leis an ngean agus an meas domhain dár gcomhshaol a chothaíonn sé inár ndaoine óga, ach leis an spreagadh agus an tiomantas chomh maith maidir le rudaí a athrú go gníomhach chun torthaí níos fearr a bhaint amach.  Táthar ag súil go muiníneach go n-athrófaí meonta na scoláirí leis an gclár agus go mbeidh tionchar dearfach aige ar iompraíocht na scoláirí, ach chomh maith leis sin, go mbeidh na páistí atá rannpháirteach iontu ina n-ambasadóirí díograiseacha a mbeidh tionchar acu ar a dteaghlaigh agus ar a gcairde dá réir sin.

Ar deireadh, labhair an tAire go díreach leis na scoláirí a bhí i láthair agus dúirt sé ‘is sibhse caomhnóirí ár bpláinéid amach anseo agus tá mé dearfach gur féidir brath oraibh.’

DEIREADH

NÓTAÍ DON EAGARTHÓIR

Thug an Roinn Tithíochta, Pleanála, Pobail agus Rialtais Áitiúil tacaíocht d’fhorbairt treoirthionscadail a bhaineann le bruscar muirí lenar mian linn feasacht a ardú faoin bhfadhb agus tionchar a bheith againn ar athrú in iompraíocht a mbeidh laghdú de réir a chéile ar bhruscar a chríochnaíonn suas sa mhuirthimpeallacht mar thoradh air.

Tá Tionscnamh na Scoileanna Glasa á oibriú agus á chomhordú ag Aonad Oideachais Chomhshaoil An Taisce in Éirinn i gcomhpháirtíocht le hÚdaráis Áitiúla ar fud na tíre. Tá sé tacaithe ag an Roinn Tithíochta, Pleanála, Pobail agus Rialtais Áitiúil, an Roinn Iompair, Turasóireachta agus Spóirt, an Roinn Cumarsáide, Gníomhú Aeráide agus Comhshaoil agus tá sé urraithe ag Wrigley Company Ltd agus Uisce Éireann.

Ceann de phríomhthosca ratha chlár na Scoileanna Glasa ná gur clár téamúil atá ann. Is é sin le rá, oibríonn na scoileanna atá ag tabhairt faoin gclár trí na seacht gcéim, téama amháin ag an am. Is is na téamaí de réir oird:

  • Bruscar, Dramhaíl, Fuinneamh, Uisce, Taisteal, Bithéagsúlacht agus Saoránacht Dhomhanda

Meastar Clár na Scoileanna Glas mar chlár thar a bheith rathúil thar shraith Modúl faoi urraíocht Ranna agus Gníomhaireachta éagsúla Rialtais.

Is éard is Scoileanna Glasa ann, ar a dtugtar Éicea-Scoileanna ar bhonn idirnáisiúnta, clár idirnáisiúnta um oideachas comhshaoil, córas bainistíochta comhshaoil agus scéim dámhachtana lena gcuirtear chun cinn agus lena n-aithnítear gníomhaíocht fhadtéarmach uile-scoile maidir leis an gcomhshaol.  Tá an clár ar bun ar feadh os cionn 20 bliain, agus tá scoileanna ó 58 tír ar fud an domhain agus 14 mhilliún scoláire páirteach ann anois. Tionscnamh bunúsach is ea Éicea-Scoileanna lena spreagtar daoine óga le bheith páirteach ina gcomhshaol trí dheis a thabhairt dóibh é a chosaint go gníomhach.

I measc tionscnamh eile de chuid An Taisce atá urraithe ag an An Roinn Tithíochta, Pleanála, Pobail agus Rialtais Áitiúil tá siad seo a leanas:

  • SCÉIM AN BHRAIT GHOIRM – baineann sé seo le cáilíocht an uisce agus caighdeáin taitneamhachta ag uiscí snámha agus muiríní ar fud na hÉireann.
  • GRADAIM CÓSTA GLAS d’uisce snámha faoi líon beag daoine
  • Feachtais um #STÁISIÚN GLANTA TRÁ 2 NÓIMÉAD
  • NA GRADAIM FHÓTAGRAFACHA gach fómhar ina n-ardaítear feasacht faoinár muirthimpeallacht.

Trí rath agus tábhacht na gclár sin i gcomhthéacs feasacht a ardú agus rannpháirtíocht saoránach a chur chun cinn, chomh maith leis an ról luachmhar atá acu maidir le hardchaighdeán ár gcósta a choimeád, cinntíodh a gcuimsiú i gcláir fhoirmiúla na hÉireann maidir le bearta do chur chun feidhme na Treorach Réime um Straitéis Mhuirí – an ionstraim lena dtreoraítear gach beartas muirthimpeallachta de chuid an AE.  Dá réir sin táimid tiomanta do thacaíocht a thabhairt do na cláir sin sna blianta amach romhainn.

Bruscar Muirí

Fadhb dhianseasmhach is ea an bruscar muirí a bhaineann le gach réigiún sa domhan. Is é is cúis le méid bhruscar muirí an domhain brúnna méadaithe daoine ar na haigéin agus an cliseadh rialacháin agus caighdeáin réigiúnacha agus idirnáisiúnta a chur chun feidhme agus a fhorfheidhmiú. Leis na méaduithe ar an leibhéal gníomhaíochtaí eacnamaíocha agus sóisialta a bhíonn ar siúl ar na haigéin agus feadh limistéar cósta gintear dramhaíl agus cuireann sé sin leis an bhfadhb chomh maith. Agus a lán den dramhaíl ag dul isteach sa mhuirthimpeallacht, is féidir na héifeachtaí a fheiceáil i bhfad ar shiúl ón áit a ndeachaigh an dramhaíl isteach san uisce agus is dócha go bhfanfaidh sé sna farraigí ar feadh na gcéadta bliain.

Sainítear bruscar muirí mar “ábhar soladach dianseasmhach, monaraithe nó próiseáilte ar bith a fhaightear réidh leis, a dhiúscraítear, nó a thréigtear sa mhuirthimpeallacht agus sa timpeallacht chósta. Cuimsítear i mbruscar earraí a rinne daoine nó a d’úsáid daoine agus a bhfuarthas réidh leo d’aon turas nó a cailleadh de thaisme san fharraige nó ar thránna, lena n-áirítear ábhair a iompraíodh ón talamh isteach sa mhuirthimpeallachtaí trí aibhneacha, rith chun srutha, córais séarachais nó gaotha.”

Tá bruscar muirí ina bhagairt ollmhór atá ag fás ar an muirthimpeallacht agus ar an dtimpeallacht chósta ag a bhfuil tionchair dhiúltacha ar shaol ainmhithe agus ar shaol an duine. Tá carnadh bruscair mhuirí ann i gcónaí toisc go bhfuil a lán de déanta as ábhair a bhíonn mall ag díghrádú go nádúrtha nó nach ndígrádaíonn ar chor ar bith. Aithnítear an gá atá ann le haghaidh bainistíocht dramhaíola chuí agus éifeachtach go hidirnáisiúnta mar cheist nach mór aghaidh a thabhairt uirthi ar fud an domhain.

Ag aithint mhéid na faidhbe a bhaineann le bruscar muirí ar fud an domhain, dírítear aird na hÉireann ar an mbruscar muirí ar oibleagáidí maidir le bearta a chur chun feidhme le haghaidh a thabhairt ar an bhfadhb i gcomhthéacs ginearálta na Treorach Réime um Straitéis Mhuirí (TRSM). Thug Éire clár beart chun críche le déanaí le chun ceanglais TRSM a chomhlíonadh agus táimid réidh anois le tús a chur le cur chun feidhme an phróisis ilchéime, iltimthrialla.

Bruscar plaisteach

Tá plaisteach ina fhadhb faoi leith don mhuirthimpeallacht.  I ngeall ar a bhuacacht, is féidir leis scuabadh go héasca síos aibhneacha, séideadh amach ón gcósta agus scaipeadh le sruthanna. Is féidir é a dhumpáil nó a chailleadh go díreach ó longa agus ó bháid iascaireachta.  Toisc nach mbith-dhíghrádaíonn sé maireann sé sa timpeallacht san fhadtéarma agus is féidir leis briseadh ina gcáithníní micreaphlaisteacha tánaisteacha trí chreimeadh.

Áirítear iad seo a leanas ar Thionscnaimh eile do Bhruscar Muirí atá tacaithe ag an Roinn Tithíochta, Pleanála, Pobail agus Rialtais Áitiúil:

  • Suirbhé ionadaíoch fadaimseartha ar bhruscar muirí, bunaithe ar mhodheolaíocht OSPAR, ina sainaithnítear treochtaí agus ceisteanna le himeacht ama
  • Suirbhé um Bruscar Ghrinneall na Farraige chun measúnú a dhéanamh ar scála agus scóip bhruscar ghrinneall na farraige.
  • Tionscadal Fulmairí chun measúnú a dhéanamh ar an leibhéal plaisteach i mbiotra ina n-úsáidtear fulmairí mar speicis tháscacha.
  • Forbairt athchúrsála úir plaisteach ísealcharbóin, dramhaíl phlaisteach a fhaightear sa muirthimpeallacht a thiontú ina hamhábhar ar éileamh d’úsáidí printéirí 3D chomh maith le réitigh ísealteicneolaíochta.
  • Taighde AE maidir le foinsí agus slite bruscair mhuirí
  • Iascaireacht do bhruscar i gcomhar le BIM agus Údaráis Poirt agus Áitiúla, chun poirt ghlasa a spreagadh agus truailliú agus bruscar ó bháid agus ó longa a laghdú.
  • Sampláil ar dhríodair ó chósta na hÉireann chun ábhar micreaphlaisteach a dhearbhú
  • Fógrófar líon tionscadal úr in 2017.
Minister Coveney at the launch of An Taisce's Green Schools and Marine Litter Initiative

Mr Simon Coveney T.D., Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government, today (21 November 2016), launched the Global Citizen Marine Environment Module of An Taisce’s Green Schools Programme

Speaking in Crosshaven Co. Cork, at the launch, the Minister described the module as a ground breaking programme and he called it genuinely "world leading" in terms of marine environmental education and raising public awareness.

The Minister said ‘Green Schools has done so much to raise the environmental awareness of the children of today and instil in them a strong and active concern for the protection of our environment.’

Referring to the problem of marine litter, he described it as a persistent problem affecting all regions of the world and that it was largely due to poor waste management on land and at sea. ‘Thus, we can all play a part in helping to reduce the problem by preventing littering and reducing, reusing or recycling items that might otherwise ultimately end up in our seas or on our coasts,’ the Minister said.

The Minister also highlighted the trans-boundary nature of the problem saying that Ireland is working hard in co-operation with the EU and other North Eastern Atlantic States, in developing measures to address this issue.

The Minister went on to say that the true success of the Green Schools programme would be measured not only by the deep care and respect for our environment that it fosters in our young people, but also the drive and commitment to actively change things for better outcomes.  It is confidently hoped that not only will the programme alter student mind-sets and influence positive student behaviour but that the children participating will then become enthusiastic ambassadors influencing their family and friends in turn.

Concluding, the Minister directly addressed the students present saying ‘you are the future custodians of our planet and I am optimistic that it is in very good hands.’

ENDS

Editor's notes

The Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government has supported  the development of a pilot project relating to marine litter in which we want to heighten awareness of the issue and to influence a change in behaviour which will eventually lead to a reduction of litter which ends up in the marine environment.

The Green Schools Initiative is operated and co-ordinated by the Environmental Education Unit of An Taisce in Ireland in partnership with Local Authorities throughout the country. It is supported by the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government, the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment and is sponsored by the Wrigley Company Ltd and Irish Water.

One of the key success factors of the Green-Schools programme is that it is a themed programme. That is, schools undertaking the programme work through the seven steps one theme at a time. The themes in sequence are:

  • Litter, Waste, Energy, Water, Travel, Biodiversity and Global Citizenship

The Green Schools Programme has been regarded as being highly successful over a series of Modules sponsored by various Government Department and Agencies.  Green-Schools, known internationally as Eco-Schools, is an international environmental education programme, environmental management system and award scheme that promotes and acknowledges long-term, whole school action for the environment.  The programme has been in existence for over 20 years, with schools from 58 countries worldwide and 14 million students now taking part. Eco-Schools is a fundamental initiative which encourages young people to engage in their environment by allowing them the opportunity to actively protect it.

Other An Taisce Initiatives supported by the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government  include:

  • The Blue Flag Scheme – this relates to water quality and amenity standards at bathing waters and marinas throughout Ireland
  • Green Coast Awards for less populated bathing waters
  •  The #2minute beach clean station campaign
  • The photographic awards each autumn which heightens awareness of our marine  environment.

The success and importance of these programmes in terms of awareness raising and promoting citizen involvement, as well as the invaluable role the perform in helping to maintain the high quality of our coast has  ensured their inclusion  in Ireland’s formal programme of measures  for  the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive – the instrument guiding all EU marine environmental policy.  As such we are committed to supporting these programmes over the coming years.

Marine Litter

Marine litter is a persistent problem affecting all regions of the world. The extent of the world’s marine litter is attributed to increased human pressures on the oceans and the failure to implement and enforce regional and international regulations and standards. Expansions in the level of economic and social activities that take place on the oceans and along coastal areas generate waste also contribute to the problem. With much of the waste finding its way into the marine environment, the effects can be noticed far from where the waste entered the water and will possibly remain in the seas for centuries.

Marine litter is defined as “as any persistent, manufactured or processed solid material discarded, disposed of, or abandoned in the marine and coastal environment. Litter consists of items that have been made or used by people and deliberately discarded or unintentionally lost in the sea or on beaches, including materials transported from land into the marine environment by rivers, run-offs, sewage systems or winds.”

Marine litter constitutes a vast and growing threat to the marine and coastal environment with negative impacts on animal and human life. There is a constant build-up of marine litter because most of it is made from materials that are slow to degrade naturally or just don’t degrade at all. The need for proper and efficient waste management is recognised internationally as an issue that must be addressed worldwide.

Acknowledging the extent of the global marine litter problem, Ireland’s attention to marine litter focuses on obligations to implement measures to address the problem in the broader context of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). Ireland recently finalised a programme of measures to comply with the requirements of the MSFD and we are now about to embark of the implementation of the multi-phase, multi-cycle process.

Plastic litter

Plastic is a particular problem for the marine environment.  Due to its buoyancy, it can easily be washed down rivers, blown offshore and dispersed by currents. It can also be dumped or lost directly from ships and fishing boats.  As it does not biodegrade it persists in the environment in the long-term and can breakdown into secondary micro-plastic particles through erosion.

Other Marine Litter Initiatives supported by DHPCLG include:

  • A representative longitudinal marine litter survey, based on OSPAR methodology, which identifies trends and issues over time
  • A Seabed litter Survey to assess the scale and scope of sea bed litter
  • The Fulmar project  to assess the level of plastic in biota using fulmars as an  indicative species
  • Development of new low carbon plastic recycling, converting plastic waste found in the marine environment into an in-demand raw material for 3D printer uses as well as low tech solutions
  • EU research on sources and pathways of marine litter
  • Fishing for litter in association with BIM and Port and Local Authorities, to encourage green ports and reducing boat and ship sourced pollution and litter
  • Sediment sampling from around Ireland’s coast to ascertain micro plastic content
  • A number of new projects will be announced in 2017