21/08/2019

New Local Environmental Projects Scheme Launched

A new scheme to support local environmental projects focusing on climate change and biodiversity has been launched by the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton.

Announcing the Scheme, Minister Bruton said: "Any school, community group or club who wants to take a step to tackle climate change or promote biodiversity should put forward ideas before 27th September.

"I have been hugely impressed by the determination among both young and old, that this time we shall take the climate challenge seriously. This is a great opportunity to demonstrate locally what can be done.

"Local, community led initiatives are crucial to delivering the ambition set out in the Climate Action Plan. These projects offer people a tangible, practical way to do their part to tackle the climate challenge and feel more connected to their local community as a result.

"It is by working together and supporting these grassroots initiatives that we can deliver the step change required. Last year over 850 projects were supported under this scheme, driving real change in local communities across the country."

The Community Environment Action Fund, (previously known as the Local Agenda 21 Environmental Partnership Fund or LA21), funds small scale, non-profit environmental projects at local level, that make a significant difference in local communities. Minister Bruton has chosen climate and biodiversity as the priorities for this year's Fund.

Applications are open today and nearly €1million (€460,000 from the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment matched by funding from local authorities) is available to support hundreds of projects in local communities all across Ireland.

Minister Bruton continued: "We have a short window of opportunity. We must act now and get behind the transition to a more sustainable path for future generations."

A wide variety of projects and schemes have been supported under the Fund in previous years including, community gardens, allotments and compost schemes, rainwater harvesting schemes, educational initiatives and environmental exhibitions. This year's priority is for projects in the area of Climate and Biodiversity.

Groups seeking funding for eligible projects are invited to make an application to their local authority (application forms are available from the local authorities). Completed application forms should be returned to the relevant local authority at the latest by 5pm, 27 September 2019.

(MH/JG)

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