Biodiversity a. Promote biodiversity protection and habitat connectivity both within protected areas and in the landscape through promoting the integration of green infrastructure and ecosystem services, including landscape, heritage, biodiversity and management of invasive and alien species in the preparation of statutory and non-statutory land-use plans. The RSES recognises the role of the National Biodiversity Data Centre through its Citizen Science initiatives; b. Support local authorities acting together with relevant stakeholders in implementing measures designed to identify, conserve and enhance the biodiversity of the Region; seek and support the implementation of the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan, National Biodiversity Action Plan and National Raised Bog SAC Management Plan; c. Local Authorities are required to carry out required screening of proposed projects and any draft land-use plan or amendment/ variation to any such plan for any potential ecological impact on areas designated or proposed for inclusion as Natura 2000/ European Sites and shall decide if an Appropriate Assessment is necessary, of the potential impacts of the project or plan on the conservation objectives of any Natura 2000/European Site; d. Support local authorities to carry out, monitor and review biodiversity plans throughout theRegion. Planning authorities should set objectives in their land use plans to implement and monitor the actions as set out in the National and County Biodiversity Plans, as the conservation of biodiversity is an essential component of sustainable development. Local authorities should address the issue of fisheries protection and invasive introduced species and encourage the use of native species for landscape planting in rural areas, in the review of their biodiversity plans; e. Support local authorities to work with all stakeholders to conserve, manage and where possible enhance the Regions natural heritage including all habitats, species, landscapes and geological heritage of conservation interest and to promote increased understanding and awareness of the natural heritage of the Region.
Invasive Species It is an objective to: a. Support coordination between the Region’s local authorities in terms of their measures to survey invasive species in their counties and coordinate regional responses; b. Encourage greater awareness of potential threats caused by invasive species and how they are spread; c. Carefully consider and implement the management of invasive species where there is a corridor, such as hydrological connections to European Sites in order to prevent the spread of invasive to sensitive sites.
All-Ireland Pollinator Plan 2015-2020 Pollinators are a hugely important group facing widespread decline. The All-Ireland Pollinator Plan states: “If we don’t protect our pollinators it will affect the food industry. Without the pollination service freely provided by our bees and hoverflies, it would be increasingly difficult and expensive for farmers to produce some crops at current scales and could result in a loss of consumer choice for Irish grown products. The beauty of the Irish landscape would also be affected without pollinators to maintain the diversity of our wild plants and support healthy ecosystems.” Pollinators face the twin threats of habitat loss and decline in wildflowers leading to pollinator starvation. Of particular concern are Ireland’s bee species, one third of which are facing extinction.
Invasive Species Invasive non-native plant and animal species are cited as the second greatest threat to biodiversity worldwide after habitat destruction. They can negatively affect native species, transform habitats and threaten whole ecosystems, causing serious problems to the environment, agriculture and the economy.
Southern Regional Assembly | RSES
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