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10th June 2020 | Environment, Marine, Press Releases

Coastal Erosion Strategy Must be Urgently Drawn up and Put in Place After Courtown Beach ‘Swept Away’: Green MEP Grace O’Sullivan

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Responding to news that Courtown Beach in Co. Wexford is to lose its Blue Flag status due to dramatic coastal erosion and the effective ‘disappearance’ of all it’s sand this week, Grace O’Sullivan Green Party MEP for Ireland South says Courtown is just one example of the many beaches being impacted by erosion, and that a strategy must be drawn up and put in place to cope with this ongoing issue:

“Throughout the country, our shores are being ravaged by erosion which has been exacerbated in recent years due to the effects of climate change. Courtown is a very dramatic example with its beautiful golden sands effectively swept away virtually overnight. But all along the coast erosion is to be seen, both directly on the shores and in the rock faces of our cliffs and surrounding lands.

“It’s imperative that a coastal erosion strategy is drawn up and put in place. We are a small island nation and our shores are particularly vulnerable to the effects of growing coastal erosion as a result of climate change.”

The MEP, from Tramore in Co. Waterford, is very familiar with the Wexford coastline and said loss of Courtown as a local amenity is tragic.

“It’s depressing to look at the before and after pictures. A picturesque stretch of golden sand just wiped out. The shifting tides and motions of the sea may bring the sand back in time, but in the meantime people in the area have lost the opportunity to enjoy all the fun and obvious health benefits.

“Not alone is our enjoyment impacted by this, it also effects wildlife and biodiversity in the area. Long-term thinking and interdepartmental planning needs to go into developing strategies to prevent some of the damage that will continue to happen if we don’t act now.

“If we don’t act to defend our coastline we will see other examples of beloved outdoor amenities being wiped out by the impacts of climate change.”