The EPA have published Maps and Charts on Ireland’s environment, detailing current environmental status and key actions that are needed to realise environmental protection. Based on the 13 State of the Environment key messages from Ireland’s Environment An Integrated Assessment 2020 Report it also includes some more recent data.
Environmental challenges are addressed by different pieces of national legislation, policies, plans and programmes. There isn’t one overall national policy position for Ireland’s environment that joins up all these areas. The first recommendation is that Ireland needs a national policy position for the environment. The will overcome the tendency to separately examine how different parts of the environment function and how challenges such as climate, nature, water, air and waste can be addressed more holistically.
Modern environmental problems are complex and cross-cutting. They need to be tackled in an integrated way. This requires a whole of system approach to environmental protection. This is done by thinking more about how environmental systems fit together and interact. Environmental policies need to work together under one umbrella to integrate all the functionalities so that multiple benefits can be identified, and trade-offs can be recognised and accounted for.
A national policy position that covers all environmental issues would make our policies work together and deliver more effective outcomes in all realms.
The document gives recommendations for actions on all environmental areas including: policy implementation, health and well-being, climate, air quality, water quality, nature, marine, clean energy, environmentally sustainable agriculture, water services, circular economy and land use.
State of the Environment | Environmental Protection Agency (epa.ie)