Green Party Ministers Malcolm Noonan TD and Senator Pippa Hackett have launched the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan 2021-2025. This stronger, more ambitious roadmap aims to help biodiversity by engaging communities, local authorities, farmers, schools and businesses to take action for nature.
Actions outlined in the Pollinator plan include encouraging the restoration of land for pollinators and other biodiversity; increasing the focus on rare species that are at risk of disappearing, like the Great Yellow Bumblebee; and encouraging more people to pledge their garden for pollinators, creating pitstops for hungry bees right across our landscape.
Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform, Malcolm Noonan TD, welcomed the launch of the second five-year plan, and encouraged everyone to get involved:
“The first All-Ireland Pollinator Plan transformed the way many people think about nature conservation, communicating the science in a creative way that empowered everyone to get involved and work together to make space for pollinators. This new plan is bigger, stronger and more ambitious and I can’t wait to get stuck in and play my part in its implementation.
“The great thing about the Plan is that everyone can get involved: young or old, urban or rural, expert or novice. What’s more, actions for pollinators also have benefits for our wider biodiversity. I’d like to encourage everyone to get behind the new Plan and help us create a movement for nature.
“The Plan was conceived by two female scientists who – in the face of ongoing declines of the species they had dedicated their professional lives to – decided to try to change the world. Their passion and dedication, and that of the team working with them, is an inspiration to us all and I hope it will continue to drive positive, collaborative action for nature across this island.”
Ireland’s farms are key to the Pollinator Plan, which aims to celebrate farmland biodiversity and improve awareness of how farmers can help. Commenting on the importance of supporting farmers to take action for wild pollinators, Minister of State for Forestry, Land Use and Biodiversity, Senator Pippa Hackett said:
“Farmers and farmland do a vital job in managing land for our wild pollinators. Their role needs to be both recognised and celebrated, and I believe this new Plan will work to do that, by encouraging farmer engagement, and improving awareness and uptake of pollinator actions. This will then bring about landscape level change for wild pollinators and for wider biodiversity. I am therefore delighted to support the plan. My Department’s funding of a Farmland Project Officer to support the implementation of the farmland actions is also a welcome addition to it and I look forward to seeing great success for the plan as it moves into the next phase.”
Together with the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan, Ministers at the Department of Housing jointly issued a letter to all Local Authorities and Councillors asking them to get involved and see what they can do to support pollinators on their own lands, particularly in the important early Spring season. Minister Noonan commented on the importance of Local Authorities taking action for biodiversity in their communities:
“My colleagues at the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage have collectively written to the Chief Executives of all Local Authorities, as well as all Councillors and Mayors, asking them to do what they can to support pollinators, particularly in early-Spring, when few pollinator-friendly plants are flowering. We’ve also dedicated a portion of the lawns at the Custom House to be managed for nature – my team and I conducted an informal botanical survey and the seed bank there is surprisingly diverse, so I’m excited to see what emerges over the coming weeks and months and will be keeping an eye on it.”
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