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A bird's eye view of the vineyard
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Thousands of children are in danger of huge disruption to their education because of the school building scandal. About 40 schools are due to be inspected because of concerns about serious structural defects.
Defects have already been found in a number of schools built by Western Building Systems. This company won a large amount of contracts from the Department of Education and was responsible for building many schools. read full story / add a comment
A Workers’ Party councillor has called on the OPW to reverse its decision to sell two residential sites which it owns in Dublin city. The sites are due to be auctioned by Lambert Smith Hampton on November 6th. read full story / add a comment
The Court has today (Fri 19th Oct) at the request of Bord Pleanala put the hearing of the Judicial Review of the Ringaskiddy Incinerator planning permission back a month. The hearing is now scheduled to begin on 19 March 2019.
The Court has made some revisions to the timeline for exchange of documents in the meantime. The extension was triggered by the Board not meeting its deadline of last Friday for filing its Statement of Opposition. It explained to the Court that its legal team was in difficulty as the Board Chair had resigned and the new Chair only takes up office on 30 October. They asked to be allowed to file their Statement by 9 November. read full story / add a comment
international / worker & community struggles and protests / press release Friday October 19, 2018 22:22 by LASC
LASC, as an organisation with a mission to expose injustice in Ireland and Latin America and to stand in solidarity with the people of Latin America who are resisting oppression and are struggling to create a fair and inclusive society, shares the concerns of many of our members in relation to the current situation in Nicaragua. read full story / add a comment
Over half a million households in rural Ireland are missing out on broadband because of a disastrous privatisation policy.
Up to 1999, the telephone network was run by a state company, Telecom Eireann. But the Fianna Fail government decided to copy Margaret Thatcher and sell it off. Ever since then, disaster has piled on disaster.
Instead of providing long term investment to install broad band, a series of private owners simply asset stripped the company, which had been re-named Eircom. read full story / add a comment
Straw shortage impacts on environment. Peat permitted as animal bedding due to ‘exceptional circumstances’
Peat permitted as animal bedding due to ‘exceptional circumstances. Ban on use on organic farms also lifted
The Department of Agriculture has responded to objections about Teagasc’s recommended use of peat for animal bedding by stating that the authorisation has only been made in the ‘exceptional circumstances of the current fodder and bedding shortage’.
riends of the Irish Environment [FIE] had written to the Minister objecting to a recent Teagasc Factsheet entitled ‘Alternatives to straw bedding’ which recommended peat as an alternative to straw for animal bedding. The environmental charity’s submission provided evidence that Bord na Mona and independent operators are aggressively marketing peat for animal bedding this autumn. read full story / add a comment
Leaked memo shows business tactics to undermine climate change targets
BusinessEurope, the largest group of business interests in Europe – which includes Google and Facebook as well as IBEC– has advised its members to oppose the ‘new increases of ambition’ as the European Commission is considering whether to set more ambitious climate goals. The issue will be determined in December at the COP24 conference in Poland.
The memo, obtained by Greenpeace Europe, comes as a UN draft report due for publication in October is known to be calling for ‘rapid and far reaching’ changes. read full story / add a comment
wexford / arts and media / press release Monday September 03, 2018 22:36 by Wexford Documentary Film Festiva 6 images 1 attached file
This September sees the much-anticipated return of The 6th Wexford Documentary Film Festival, a jam-packed 3-day festival of International, National, and Local films. The Festival takes place in the working fishing village of Kilmore Quay, County Wexford from Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd September 2018. In keeping with the festival ethos, this year’s festival returns with a curated program of films that powerfully explore social, political, and environmental concerns. The Wexford Documentary Film Festival is gaining strength and popularity, by providing the public with the opportunity to see award winning National and International documentary films and 2018 is no exception!
The Festival program engages with some of the critical issues facing society at present both globally and locally. These include films that explore the threat to democracy, the role and responsibility of the media, the ways in which we can create an inclusive society and films that portray the positive role women are playing in challenging and shaping society. read full story / add a comment
Indirect support to burning peat through a Public Service Obligation (PSO) levy to support electricity generation from three peat powered plants when co-fired with biomass has been challenged as it is leading to significant increases in greenhouse gas emissions and increasing the price of biomass to home users, forcing them to use more fossil fuels. read full story / add a comment
European Commission issues Court proceedings against Ireland over water quality
More than 1 million Irish drinking water consumers affected by chemical exceedences
The European Commission has opened an infringement case against Ireland in the EU Court of Justice about the exceedances of the permitted level of the chemical trihalomethanes [THMs] in Irish drinking water. The proceedings, resulting from a complaint by Friends of the Irish Environment (FIE), cover not only the failure to meet the WHO and EU standards in water supplied to over 1 million consumers , but also the failure to comply with the obligation to ‘inform consumers promptly and give the necessary advice’.  read full story / add a comment
national / animal rights / press release Saturday July 28, 2018 16:47 by Roger Yates 1 comment (last - monday august 13, 2018 13:49) 1 video file
This recently updated video shows animal exploitation in Ireland in a variety of settings, including slaughterhouses, farms, laboratories, hare coursing fields, and dairy parlours. read full story / add a comment
This week the US Department of Education proposed new student "borrower defense" rules. read full story / add a comment
international / economics and finance / press release Wednesday July 25, 2018 18:56 by Lydia Andrews
New Senate legislation offers additional options for Puerto Rico to cut its debt. Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Ed Markey (D-MA) and Kamala Harris (D-CA) introduced the US Territorial Relief Act. If Congress passes the act, US Territories that experience natural disasters could qualify for debt relief. read full story / add a comment
Council planner ‘unable to do any enforcement files’
Blames 40% reduction in staff
A west Cork County Council’s planner was ‘unable’ to investigate an enforcement complaint ‘due to workload commitments’ as his ‘planning applications have to take priority’. 
Publication of internal mails detailing a ‘significant matter’ comes a week after Dr Áine Ryall of UCC called the lack of enforcement of environmental laws ‘a national scandal’ at a recent EU Law Conference.  read full story / add a comment
As some of our Politicians try to get scramblers under new Irish Legislation and other TDs shout about cycle rickshaws being dangerous, the elephant in the room i.e SULKY RACING is treated with silence. When we enquire about Sulkies, we are shuffled from the Dept of Agriculture to Department of Transport to the Gardai , no one wants to know.
Sulky racing causes extreme suffering, distress and death to horses nationwide and also poses an unacceptably high risk to public safety.
A young horse was seriously injured when they broke free from a sulky they were forced to pull on the Kilkenny to Waterford Road then smashed into an oncoming vehicle. The driver of the vehicle was uninjured but was left badly shaken by the incident. Due to the severity of the horses’s injuries, a vet had to be called to the scene to euthanize the horse to prevent further suffering.
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CHASE has applied to the High Court for permission to launch a judicial review against An Bord Pleanála’s decision to approve planning for Indaver Ireland’s incinerator at Ringaskiddy.
The application was mentioned in Court in Dublin this morning, 19 July 2018 by Maurice Collins Senior Counsel on behalf of CHASE. The matter was adjourned and will be heard next Tuesday morning, July 24th at 10.15am. It is anticipated that a decision will be made on that day on the request by CHASE for permission to proceed. read full story / add a comment
The US Treasury is calling for greater scrutiny into the use of "anonymous" shell companies. Last week, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin urged Congress to quickly pass legislation to make the identity of shell company owners available to law enforcement. read full story / add a comment
The Heritage Bill completed its passage through the Oireachtas last night, despite widespread opposition from environmental groups, opposition parties, and concerned citizens and farmers working together with biodiversity.
The Heritage Bill will allow for a relaxation of the dates of the closed period for the burning of vegetation and ‘the cutting, grubbing, removal and otherwise destroying of hedgerows’ contained in Section 40 of the Wildlife Act (1976 and amended 2000)[Note 1] The legislation will allow burning of our upland and lowland hills in March, extending the open period for burning by one month, and for the cutting of roadside hedgerows in August [Note2]. read full story / add a comment
The US Senate voted for Puerto Rico disaster relief in the form of food assistance with the passage of the "Farm Bill." The Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018, included Senators Marco Rubio and Kirsten Gillibrand's amendment to fund Puerto Rico's Nutritional Assistance Program. read full story / add a comment
DUBLIN DEMONSTRATION SUPPORTING Millions of Chinese, they Are Calling for an End to the Yulin Dog Meat Festival
A Demonstration by Irish Animal Rights activists is supporting other Vegan/Anti animal eating campaigners worldwide , especially Chinese activists who are hoping the Chinese authorities will crack down on the horrors of the notorious Yulin dog and cat eating festival from 21st to 30th june 2018. Officials failed to keep pledges to come down heavily on the appalling scenes of dogs being battered, blow-torched and butchered last year, leaving thousands of animals – many stolen pets – to die horrendously.
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