EU approves €2.2m environment fund for Burren in Co Clare

20 Jul 2012

Evening vista of the Burren. Image via Wikimedia Commons

The European Commission has approved a €2.2m project by Clare County Council to protect the environmental heritage of the Burren. Half of the money will come from the European Commission, while the other half will be national co-funding.

The European Commission has approved funding for 202 new projects under the LIFE+ programme, the EU’s environment fund.

The project, it seems, aims to protect the Burren’s heritage while also supporting local employment and economic activity.

Clare County Council said the aim is to strengthen the integration of tourism and natural heritage and to reconcile tourism development with the conservation of biodiversity and cultural heritage in the Burren area of Ireland.

The Burren itself is renowned for its karst limestone that supports a diverse array of flora and fauna, as well as archaeological monuments.

As for the overall environment fund from the EU, the projects across Europe cover actions in the fields of nature conservation, environmental policy, climate change and information and communication on environmental issues.

The European Commission indicated today that they represent a total investment of some €516.5m, of which the EU will provide €268.4m.

“These latest LIFE+ projects continue a trend, started two decades ago, for innovative and best-practice actions furthering nature conservation, improving the environment and tackling climate change,” said Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik in an EU statement today.

The commission received 1,078 applications from the 27 EU member states in response to its latest call for proposals, which closed in July 2011.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic