Speaking at the University College Cork Law Department's conference on ‘Enforcing European Community Environmental Law' last Thursday, FIE has called for a revision of the legislation that prevents ‘access to a review' to challenge planning decisions under the Strategic Infrastructure and Roads Acts.
FIE quotes High Court Justice Kelly's comment that ‘it is not to credit of this state that it has failed to give effect to its legal obligations' under EU law.
FIE also quotes Justice Clarke's subsequent judgement in which he says that he is ‘satisfied that it might well be necessary to have regard to the requirements of the Directive that there be ‘wide access to justice'. Clarke goes even further and says that in order to provide means of reviewing environmental decisions it may well be necessary to go beyond the ‘existing jurisprudence'.
FIE has joined with An Taisce, the National Trust and the Irish Peatland Conservation Council [IPCC] to protest against the grant of planning permission for a 100MW peat and mixed fuel power plant. An Taisce and the IPCC have appealed the decision to An Bord Pleanala while FIE has raised concerns with the Minister for Natural Resources Eamon Ryan and the European Commission.
Environmental groups around the world have supported an hour long demonstration of global solidarity about climate change and the need for conservation. Created to take a stand against the greatest threat our planet has ever faced, Earth Hour uses the simple action of turning off the lights for one hour to deliver a powerful message about the need for action on global warming. Using the slogan ‘See The Difference You Can Make’, householders, business, and the government around the world turned off non-essential lights.
Friends of the Irish Environment is writing to the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Micheál Martin questioning the first trade deal to be announced by the Minister in South Africa. Harte Peat sells ‘deeply-dug wet peat’ which is used as a base for growing mushrooms. The Minister has announced distribution by an irish firm with a local partner company that will see its products distributed through out South Africa. It is now bidding to expand its markets in Africa into Mozambique to provide Irish peat which can be used to soak up oil pollution.